Lavrov and Anan find the situation in Syria unacceptable

UN Envoy Kofi Annan supported Russia's proposal to extend the UN observer mission in Syria.

The mission's mandate runs out on July 21.

"The situation surrounding the possibility of prolonging the UN presence in Syria was discussed. We think that it is playing an important and constructive role in stabilizing the situation," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told Interfax on Tuesday.

"Kofi Annan shares this opinion and supports us. It is necessary to make the most of it," he said following negotiations between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Annan in Moscow on Monday.

Russia proposed arranging a meeting of the Action Group for Syria in Moscow at the end of July during talks between Lavrov and  Annan.

"Both sides noted that the situation in Syria is unacceptable. The momentum gained in Geneva should be maintained. For this purpose we proposed holding a meeting of the Action Group in Moscow at the end of July at the level of senior officials, not at ministerial level," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told Interfax on Tuesday.

The talks between Lavrov and Annan were generally constructive, he said.

"The sides noted the need to make further efforts to implement the Geneva communique. We did our best to persuade Kofi Annan to actively work together with external players and the opposition," Gatilov said.

"Naturally, further consultations are also needed," the high-ranking Russian diplomat said.

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