US' Kerry, Turkish FM discuss Syria before int'l meeting


The two top diplomats discussed ‘the importance of tomorrow’s discussions’ as world powers prepare to meet in Vienna

WASHINGTON – Secretary of State John Kerry met with Turkish Foreign Minister Feridun Sinirlioglu on Friday night in Vienna to discuss the Syrian conflict just hours before world powers gather in the Austrian capital to work on a long-sought political transition.

The two top diplomats discussed “the importance of tomorrow’s discussions” and “reviewed coalition efforts against ISIL in Iraq and Syria”, according to State Department spokesman John Kirby.

“Both ministers stressed the need for intensifying those efforts across all lines of effort,” Kirby said of the anti-Daesh fight.

World powers, including key regional rivals, Saudi Arabia and Iran, will meet in Vienna over the weekend for a second round of talks aimed at brokering an end to Syria’s five-year conflict.

The last round concluded at the end of October with participants, including 17 nations, the EU and UN, agreeing on a communiqué that emphasized the need to ramp up efforts to end the civil war.