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Top Russian, Syrian, Turkish, Iranian diplomats to meet in near future: Moscow

Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov (file photo)

Russia's deputy foreign minister says a quadrilateral meeting among the top diplomats of Russia, Syria, Turkey, and Iran will be held in the near future as part of efforts made to normalize relations between Ankara and Damascus.

"[The meeting] is in the works. We are setting a date," Mikhail Bogdanov was quoted by Russia's TASS news agency as saying on Monday.

"The sooner the better," Bogdanov said, when asked whether the quadrilateral meeting would take place in early May or before that.

Stressing that the date of the meeting should make sense for each of the four ministers, the Russian diplomat said, "There was no official date, so we didn’t postpone anything. We are coordinating [the date] now. There have been various proposals, but each of the four ministers has his own schedule.”

The senior diplomats from the four countries were reported earlier to have discussed preparations for a four-party ministerial meeting in Moscow on April 3-4.

Turkey severed its relations with Syria in March 2012, a year after the Arab country found itself in the grip of rampant and deadly violence waged by foreign-backed militants, including those allegedly supported by Ankara.

The two neighboring countries are currently taking steps toward reconciliation after 11 years.

The process of normalizing ties between Ankara and Damascus kicked off on December 28, 2022, when the Russian, Syrian and Turkish defense ministers met in Moscow, in what was the highest-level meeting between the two sides since the outbreak of the Syria conflict.

Last month, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad conditioned any potential meeting with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Turkey’s withdrawal of troops from northern Syria.

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