President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, held a “very good” discussion regarding the situation in Syria during a Tuesday afternoon phone call, according to the White House.
During the conversation, the leaders agreed “that the suffering in Syria has gone on for far too long and that all parties must do all they can to end the violence,” the executive mansion said in a readout of the first call between the two leaders since the U.S. bombed a Syrian base last month.
The phone call addressed long-discussed “safe, or de-escalation, zones” to help bolster the prospects for peace, it added.
The U.S. will be sending a representative to the Russian-Turkish mediated peace talks in the Kazakh capital of Astana on Wednesday and Thursday. Moscow and Ankara have backed opposing sides in Syria’s over six-year conflict.
The Trump administration’s recent decision to launch a barrage of Tomahawk cruise missiles at a Syrian airfield it believes was used to carry out a deadly chemical attack drew Russia’s ire, marking the worst strain in U.S.-Russia relations since Trump came to office.
Putin and Trump “also discussed at length working together to eradicate terrorism throughout the Middle East” as well as the “very dangerous situation in North Korea”, the White House said.
The call comes as congressional committees and the FBI are conducting separate inquiries into potential links between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 race for the Oval Office.—Agencies