Russian, Iranian and Turkish foreign ministers, Sergey Lavrov, Mohammad Javad Zarif and Mevlut Cavusoglu, will hold an extraordinary meeting in Moscow on Saturday, TASS reports.
Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the sides would consider the developments in Syria and discuss possible new joint moves that would help advance intra-Syrian contacts in the framework of UN Security Council’s Resolution 2254 and taking into account the decisions of the Syrian National Dialogue Congress in Sochi.
The ministers are expected to synchronize watches ahead of another round of talks on Syria in Kazakhstan’s capital of Astana due in mid-May. On Friday, Russian president’s special envoy for the Middle East and African countries and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said the sides would adopt a document outlining the three countries’ position on continuing joint coordinated efforts in the Astana format.
The talks in Moscow will become the first meeting between the Russian, Iranian and Turkish foreign ministers after the April 14 missile strikes on Syria carried out by the United States, the United Kingdom and France.
Vitaly Naumkin, Academic Director at the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Oriental Studies, told TASS one of the goals of the Western aggression was to drive a wedge between the Astana process guarantors - Russia, Turkey and Iran. While Moscow and Tehran condemned the aggression against Syria, Ankara welcomed the strikes calling them "a positive step," he noted.
Special focus will be on the humanitarian situation in Syria, including within the context of implementing the provisions of UN Security Council’s Resolution 2401 (on establishing a ceasefire to render assistance - TASS), Zakharova said. "We are confident that a more active role of humanitarian agencies could facilitate its implementation, but rendering assistance to the Syrian people must not be pegged to the achievement of certain political goals," the diplomat added.