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Putin Met With Assad in Sochi - Kremlin Spokesman

18 May 2018

Russian President Vladimir Putin says Russian warships with cruise missiles will remain on a permanent patrol in the Mediterranean Sea to react to possible threats emanating from the Syrian civil war.

A posting on the Syrian presidency's Facebook page said the two leaders consulted on various issues of mutual interest and the latest political and military developments in Syria. At the invitation of Russian President Putin, Modi will visit Russia on May, 21 wherein the two leaders will exchange views on worldwide matters in a broad and long-term perspective with the objective of further strengthening the "Special and Privileged Strategic Partnership".

Mr Putin also congratulated Mr Assad on the "successes of the Syrian government's army in the fight against terrorist groups".

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"The next task, of course, is the economic recovery and humanitarian aid for those people in a hard situation", Putin added.

Russian Federation has been involved in Syria's civil war since September 2015.

The news agency also paraphrased Mr. Putin's message, though slightly differently, saying that, "in the course of the meeting Putin announced to Assad that he was counting on the withdrawal of foreign armed forces from the territory of Syria". Indo-Russia cooperation in Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) issues are likely to be discussed. "[The two parties] have noted the necessity to create additional conditions for the resumption of full-format political process in Syria", Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

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Sources said there could be more such informal summits between Modi and other world leaders in the coming months as India eyes to play an important role in global power dynamics.

But rebel factions still control large parts of northwestern and southwestern Syria, while a Kurdish-led alliance backed by the United States holds most of the northeast.

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Putin Met With Assad in Sochi - Kremlin Spokesman