U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry gets off a plane upon his arrival at Moscow's Vnukovo airport, Russia, March 23, 2016. (REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev)
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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Moscow on Wednesday seeking answers from President Vladimir Putin on how Russia views a political transition unfolding in Syria, in particular the fate of President Bashar al-Assad.The meeting was arranged after Putin's surprise announcement on March 14 that he was partially withdrawing Russian forces from Syria.Russia has repeatedly said that only the Syrian people can decide Assad's fate at the ballot box and has bristled at any talk of regime change.In Geneva, where warring sides are a week into talks on ending the conflict, government officials have rejected any discussion on the fate of Assad, who opposition leaders say must go as part of any transition.U.S. Special envoy on Syria Staffan de Mistura said on Tuesday he hoped the U.S-Russia meeting would give an impetus to the peace talks where the divisive issue of a political transition is stalling progress.
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