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Foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, Turkey discuss trust-building measures for Syria

Foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, Turkey discuss trust-building measures for Syria

Russia's Lavrov, Turkey's Mevlut Cavusoglu and Iran's Mohammad Javad Zarif have gathered in the Russian capital to discuss the progress of Syrian de-escalation effort as well as other issues of regional importance, like the risk of the United States withdrawal from a nuclear deal with Iran.

Zarif said he will meet his Russian Federation and Turkish counterparts to press on with the Astana and Sochi peace negotiations, particularly after the recent U.S. military attack on Syria that hampered the political settlement of conflicts.

Attempts are being made to hinder the peace process in Syria, particularly to prevent the establishment of a constitutional committee, Lavrov said.

Russia, Turkey and Iran have been planning how to carve up Syria among the coalition, as western nations continue to press for a seat at the negotiating table.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has accused the United States of trying to divide Syria during a meeting in Moscow with his counterparts from Iran and Turkey.

Russia, Iran and Turkey have also been competing for influence and zones of influence in the country. The three nations launched their peace attempt in the Kazakhstan capital Astana previous year, which they are pursuing independently of a U.S. and UN-backed Geneva initiative.

"Thanks to it, it became possible to tackle the situation on the battlefield with the Islamic State group [Daesh] and the al Nusra Front", he said, as militants have lost most of the territory they controlled in Syria.

The next Syria talks in Astana are meanwhile set for May 14.

The three agreed to intensify efforts to provide humanitarian aid in Syria. "We will be cooperating with the government, the opposition and of course with our counterparts at the United Nations, the International Red Cross, the Syrian Red Crescent and other international organisations", Mr Lavrov said. Rebels left the town a few days after the chemical attack there on April 7, in which dozens of people were reported killed.

Also on Saturday, Iran and Russian Federation slammed Western strikes against the Syrian regime in response to its chemical attack on Douma on April 7.

"We have trust in the viability and importance of this format", Cavusoglu said.