Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safadi (R) gives a joint press conference with Russian his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov at the Foreign Ministry in Amman on September 11, 2017. / AFP / KHALIL MAZRAAWI
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Saudi Arabia has assured Russia that it supports a gradual process of negotiating local cease-fires and setting up "de-escalation zones" in Syria, Russia's foreign minister said Monday, a day after meeting with Saudi leaders.Russia and Iran, Saudi Arabia's main regional foe, back Syria's government, while Saudi Arabia supports Syrian rebels. Safadi said Monday that Jordanian-Russian cooperation is important, especially in southern Syria.In a dig at the U.S., Lavrov defended his country's military support for Syrian President Bashar Assad, saying Russia, along with Iran and the Iran-backed Lebanese militia Hezbollah, are in Syria "based on a direct invitation from the legitimate Syrian authorities".
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