Syria will be at center of Putin-Obama meeting on June 17

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his U.S. counterpart Barack Obama will discuss the latest developments in Syria at a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G8 summit on June 17.

"Certainly, great attention will be paid to the Syrian problem, especially amid American representatives' statements that the U.S. intelligence community has information that [Syrian President Bashar] al-Assad's regime used chemical weapons, including sarin gas, which can cause paralysis," Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov said at a press briefing ahead of the summit.

The two presidents earlier exchanged messages, and the time has come for a personal meeting on different topics of the bilateral and international agenda, Ushakov said.

The Putin-Obama meeting is expected to continue for about an hour, after which three bilateral documents and a statement on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict will be signed, the presidential aide said.

Ushakov said that it was planned to discuss enhancing cooperation in the anti-terrorist sphere at the meeting as well.

"It is a necessity to have close cooperation between the Russian and U.S. special services which are free of politics. This has been confirmation amid the tragic events on April 15 in Boston. The Russian side is also interested in cooperating with our U.S. partners in the area of special services in order to ensure the security of the Olympics in Sochi," he said.

Ushakov said that discussing the missile shield, nuclear weapons reduction and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destructions were on the agenda.

"Joint and coordinated decisions on all these fundamental topics are needed, unilateral actions in the sphere of strategic stability are unacceptable. Russia and the U.S. intend to continue a constructive dialog on all pressing aspects of international security," Ushakov said.

"It is also expected that we will discuss enhancing bilateral cooperation in the interests of decreasing tension on the Korean peninsula and of securing positive moments in the situation around the Iranian nuclear program," the official said.

"One more international topic for dialog is ensuring stability in Afghanistan, including amid the coming withdrawal of the International Security Assistance Force in 2014, and continuing joint work to carry out military transit," Ushakov said.

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