MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem will visit Russia on April 13-15 to discuss with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov joint steps to minimize the consequences of the US missile strike on Syria.
"At the invitation of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, on April 13-15, Syrian Foreign Minister Mr. Muallem will pay a working visit to Russia… Possible joint steps will be considered to minimize the negative consequences of this gross violation of international law [the US attack on Syria's airbase] for international and regional peace and security," Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing Wednesday.
Zakharova added that Lavrov, Muallem and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif will hold trilateral talks in Moscow on April 14.
Earlier this week, Syrian Ambassador to Russia Riyad Haddad told Sputnik that Muallem would visit Moscow soon in relation to the latest events in the Syrian province of Idlib and the US attack on a Syrian airbase.
On Tuesday, chairman of the Russian State Duma International Affairs Committee Leonid Slutsky said that a permanent parliamentary trilateral committee composed of Russian, Syrian and Iranian lawmakers may be established in the near future, with the decision expected to be made after the trilateral talks on April 14.
Muallem denied the government’s involvement in the Idlib incident, saying it had never used nor would it ever use chemical weapons on either civilians or terrorists operating in the country.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on Wednesday that the airstrike near Khan Shaykhun by the Syrian air force hit a terrorist warehouse that stored chemical weapons slated for delivery to Iraq, and called on the UN Security Council to launch a proper investigation into the incident.
However, the incident was used as pretext for the US missile strike against the Ash Sha’irat airbase carried out late on April 6. US President Donald Trump characterized the strike as a response to the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government troops, while Lavrov said it was a violation of international law.