Tillerson Visits Moscow Amid Tensions Over Syria

Tillerson Visits Moscow Amid Tensions Over SyriaTillerson Visits Moscow Amid Tensions Over Syria

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will arrive in Moscow on Tuesday to discuss Syria with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov.

The visit comes as recent US strikes on a Syrian base were followed by hints of sanctioning Russia for supporting Assad.

While in Moscow, Tillerson is expected to meet Lavrov on Tuesday, with the Syrian crisis being the key issue on the agenda. This is the former oil executive’s first visit to Russia as secretary of state, RT reported.

Russia expects a constructive dialogue free of confrontational rhetoric, the Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday ahead of the meeting.

Moscow is willing to discuss all matters of mutual concern raised by Tillerson and is ready “for any course of events”, the ministry noted. It would, however, prefer “to work on de-escalating the international tensions, not heightening them”, it said. “We do hope that the American side wants the same.”

It is unclear so far whether Tillerson will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin. The US Embassy told RIA Novosti news agency that the meeting with Lavrov is the only one that has been officially confirmed, while Putin’s spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, said on Monday that a meeting with the president has not been scheduled.

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