Russia stands for peaceful solution of Syrian conflict – spokesman

Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists at the G20 summit that Russia is committed to a peaceful resolution of the Syrian crisis, commenting on Pope Francis’s letter to Vladimir Putin to abandon the “futile pursuit” of a military solution.

Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists at the G20 summit that Russia is committed to a peaceful resolution of the Syrian crisis, commenting on Pope Francis’s letter to Vladimir Putin to abandon the “futile pursuit” of a military solution.

The pontiff's spokesman, Federico Lombardi, said on Sept. 5 that the Pope had sent a letter to Putin reiterating a strong opposition to any military intervention in the country, which read in part: "armed conflicts … create profound divisions and deep wounds which require many years to heal."

Peskov said he had not seen the letter yet, but if “the Pope asked Putin to proceed with the peaceful solution of the Syrian conflict, so I can assure, you we’ll put forward those efforts.”

The G20 summit currently taking place in St. Petersburg does not officially have Syrian crisis on the agenda, but the issue has dominated the majority of the bilateral meetings.

The international experts attending the summit believe that the only thing to hope for in regards to solving the Syrian crisis is that the state leaders will agree to step up demand for peace talks.

“The best thing we can hope for is that there is a more concerted effort to hold a peace conference and try to settle it (the crisis),” said Alan Alexandroff, head of the Global Summitry Project at the Canada-based Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto.

David Shorr, a global governance expert and program officer at the U.S.-based Stanley Foundation also views the G20 summit as a place “to bring two opponents to debates closer and look for common ground.”

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