April 6, 2018 / 10:48 AM / 18 days ago

Macron urges Putin to bring his influence to bear in Syria

PARIS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron and Russia’s Vladimir Putin spoke by phone on Friday, with Macron calling on Russia to use its influence to end the conflict in Syria and resume negotiations towards a political transition.

French President Emmanuel Macron (L) and Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) attend a bilateral meeting on the second day of the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, July 8, 2017. REUTERS/Ian Langsdon/POOL

“The president underlined the need to put an end to the military escalation of recent months so as to protect civilian populations,” the Elysee Palace said in a statement, adding that the two leaders had also discussed the need to ensure there is no resurgence of Islamic State in the region.

The Elysee said Macron hoped that regular dialogue between France and Russia might allow more concrete progress on finding a solution in Syria.

Writing by Luke Baker; Editing by Richard Lough

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