MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The United States under former President Barack Obama probably decided against a deal with Russia on Syria for political reasons, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview with US film director Oliver Stone.
"You know, indeed, with the Obama administration we almost reached an agreement on working jointly in Syria… We had talked about coordinating the matters related to the security of our aircraft flying over, but unfortunately this is all that we did. We didn't go further," Putin said.
"We were willing to agree on joint activities, that would have implied designating on the ground, in accordance with our data and their data, the location of terrorist groups. I believe that we should have designated targets to fight against. And we also would have agreed on the strikes to be performed jointly. And we were very close to achieving this agreement. But at the last moment, I think due to some political reasons, our American partners abandoned this project," he continued.
Russia has been supporting Damascus in its fight against terrorism since the beginning of the Syrian war in 2011. It has been conducting an anti-terror aerial operation against Islamists since 2015. Moscow also carries out regular humanitarian aid deliveries to Syria.
The United States is also engaged in the anti-terror fight in Syria. It leads an international coalition fighting against the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group, which is outlawed in both Russia and Syria.