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Britain And Russia "Share Fundamental Aims" On Syria - Cameron

posted 10 May 2013, 08:21 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 10 May 2013, 08:22 ]

On a visit to Russia, British Prime Minister David Cameron says he and Russian President Vladimir Putin both want to see an end to the conflict in Syria.

SOCHIRUSSIA (MAY 10, 2013) (UK POOL) -  British Prime Minister David Cameron and Russian President Vladimir Putin share the "fundamental aim" of bringing an end to the conflict in Syria, Cameron said on Friday (May 10).

Cameron warned that the "history of Syria is being written in the blood of her people," as the two leaders gave a joint news conference after talks in the Black Sea resort city of Sochi.

"It's no secret that we have had differing views on how best to handle the situation, but we share fundamental aims to end the conflict, to stop Syria fragmenting, to let the Syrian people choose who governs them and to prevent the growth of violent extremism," said Cameron.

The British prime minister said he welcomed the announcement by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry of an international conference to negotiate an end to the war.

"I strongly support the conference that Mr. Lavrov and Mr. Kerry agreed this week to deliver a political solution, a solution which has a transitional government based on the consent of the Syrian people as a whole," said Cameron.

Russia and the United States agreed earlier this week to seek new peace talks with both sides to end Syria's civil war.

An East-West disagreement that has seen some of the frostiest exchanges between Washington and Moscow since the Cold War has deadlocked U.N. efforts to settle the Syrian conflict for two years, so any rapprochement could bring an international common front closer than it has been for many months.

"The president and I have agreed that as permanent members of the U.N. we must help to drive this process, working with partners in the region and beyond, not just bringing the regime and opposition together at one negotiating table, but Britain,RussiaAmerica and other countries helping shape a transitional government that all Syrians can trust to protect them," said Cameron.

The Syria conflict has killed at least 70,000 people - a figure that U.N. diplomats and officials say is out of date and well below the likely actual death toll.

"We urgently have to do more for the sake of people in Syria, to break the vicious cycle that threatens to destroy Syria and that threatens to export violence and extremism around the world," said Cameron.