Readout of Secretary Kerry's Meeting With Russian President Putin
The following is attributable to Spokesperson John Kirby:
Secretary Kerry met this evening in Moscow with Russian President Putin to advance efforts to restore the nationwide cessation of hostilities in Syria and to establish conditions that can enable political transition talks to resume between the opposition and the Assad regime.
The Secretary expressed concern about repeated violations of the cessation of hostilities by the Syrian regime. The two also discussed the need to increase pressure on terrorist groups like Daesh and the al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, Jabhat al Nusra.
Secretary Kerry emphasized that absent concrete, near-term steps, diplomatic efforts could not continue indefinitely. Discussions in the morning between Secretary Kerry and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov were expected to explore initiatives in more detail.
On Ukraine, the Secretary urged an acceleration of negotiations on implementation of the Minsk agreements, especially on the security elements.