US renews offer of Syria cooperation with Russia

Matthew Lee - Associated Press
US renews offer of Syria cooperation with Russia

A journalist points at a portrait of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, with a portrait of Russian President Vladimir Putin at right, during a live telecast of the U.S. presidential election in the Union Jack pub in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko, File photo

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is renewing an offer to cooperate with Russia in the Syrian conflict, including on military matters, ahead of President Donald Trump's meeting with Russian leader Vladimir Putin this week.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Wednesday the U.S. is open to establishing no-fly zones in Syria in coordination with Russia as well as jointly setting up a truce monitoring and humanitarian aid delivery mechanism. His comments came as Trump prepared to meet with Putin on Friday in Germany. Tillerson said the U.S.-Russia cooperation would create stability in Syria as US-backed forces continue their assault on the Islamic State group.

Tillerson said the group had been "badly wounded" and may be on the "brink of complete defeat," but added that Russia has to play a constructive role.

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