US, Russia emphasize similar views
Updated: 2013-05-09 10:33
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (R) and US Secretary of State John Kerry attend a joint news conference after their meeting in Moscow, May 7, 2013. [Photo/Agencies]
MOSCOW - Visiting US Secretary of State John Kerry has tried to show the world during his two-day visit to Moscow that Russia and the United States share similar positions on some heated global issues, with a number of others dividing them.
On Wednesday, Kerry ended his first trip to Moscow where he has met Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, mingled with human rights activists, witnessed a rehearsal of the Victory Day Parade and laid a wreath at the Tomb of Unknown Soldier and Eternal Flame near the Kremlin.
During his meeting with Putin, Kerry said both Washington and Moscow were interested in stability in the Middle East and they shared similar positions over the Syrian crisis.
He made it clear that both sides were for political solution, with respect to the Geneva communique, to the Syrian crisis.
The communique, Kerry noted, should not be treated simply as a piece of paper, but "as a road map to a new Syria without violence. "
Putin, for his part, said he was satisfied with the level of cooperation between Moscow and Washington.
Recalling two recent telephone talks with his US counterpart Barack Obama, Putin expressed his hope that such contact could be even closer.
"It is good that our contacts with colleagues from the United States are maintained at all level regularly," Putin said, adding he hoped to meet Obama personally later this year.
Kerry confirmed that Obama was looking forward to meeting with Putin over major international issues like Syrian crisis, Iranian nuclear program and the situation on the Korean Peninsula.
According to the Kremlin, such a meeting could be arranged during a Group of Eight (G8) summit in Northern Ireland scheduled this June.
After talks with Kerry, Lavrov confirmed Tuesday that Moscow and Washington "have always been in favor of a political solution, the inadmissibility of Syria's break-up" and added that the United States and Russia "do not differ greatly" on the issue.
"We believe that full implementation of the Geneva Communique pre-supposes the establishment of a transitional governing agency. We proceed from the assumption that the agency will exercise full executive power," Lavrov said, adding "we are confident that will be the best and shortest way to settle the Syrian crisis".
During his meeting with the local human rights activists at the US ambassador's residence, Kerry mostly listened to their complaints about the latest restrictions imposed by Russian authorities on the non-commercial organizations.
After Moscow, Kerry leaves for Rome.