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Russia ready to coordinate steps to block Turkish-Syrian border — FM

November 27, 2015, 17:55 UTC+3
Lavrov recalled that French President Francois Hollande earlier voiced the proposal to adopt specific measures to block the Turkish-Syrian border
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Turkish side of the border with Syria

Turkish side of the border with Syria

© AP Photo/Emrah Gurel

MOSCOW, November 27. /TASS/. Russia is ready to coordinate practical steps to block the Turkish-Syrian border in cooperation with Damascus, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Friday after talks with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem.

Lavrov recalled that French President Francois Hollande earlier voiced the proposal to adopt specific measures to block the Turkish-Syrian border.

"We actively support that. We are open for coordination of practical steps, certainly, in interaction with the Syrian government," he said. "We are convinced that by blocking the border we will in many respects solve the tasks to eradicate terrorism on Syrian soil."

"We hope that initiative by President Hollande will be implemented within the framework of our joint work, including in the Group of Support for Syria," the minister said.

Russia has questions about Ankara’s commitment to anti-terror efforts

Lavrov pointed out that Russia has question about Ankara’s real plans, including those on counter-terrorist efforts.

"The hotbed of terrorist treat is concentrated in vast territories of Syria and Iraq," he said. "It is the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and we have a common opinion that it can be exterminated only without any double standards. Special responsibility in terms of denouncing such double standards and acting in a united front against terrorism rests on Syria’s neighbor countries."

"We think it highly cynical when some of the countries speak about their commitment to the corresponding United Nations Security Council resolutions and declare themselves members of anti-terrorist coalitions but in reality are playing a game where terrorists are allocated the role of secret allies," Lavrov stressed. "We have more and more questions about Ankara’s real plans and the degree of its readiness to exterminate terrorism, in particular in Syria, and its commitment to the normalization of the situation in Syria."

The Russian top diplomat drew attention to the statement by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who stressed that terrorist threat could be countered through the efforts of the entire world community, with due respect to the norms of international law and the United Nations Security Council’s central role.

"We are ready to take due account of these or those concerns and interests of the countries committed to anti-terrorist efforts and are ready for such formats of coalition, cooperation and coordination that would cause no discomfort to anyone," he said. "Now it is up to our partners, including those who are members of the coalition formed last year by the United States, which has yielded no visible results as of yet."

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