U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday he would travel to Moscow next week for talks with Russian leaders on Ukraine and a political settlement in Syria.
Kerry made the announced on the sidelines of the climate change conference in Paris, saying he intended to meet with the Russian president and the foreign minister.
Kerry said that despite Russia’s military and political interests in Syria, Moscow "has been constructive" in trying to find a political settlement to end the Syrian conflict.
"They have helped us in this process,” Kerry said. “Russia has been constructive in helping the Vienna process to take place, to be successful, and I think they want a political settlement there."
Kerry did not elaborate on a date for the Moscow talks, but it would take place before a possible meeting in New York on December 18 on efforts to push the Syrian political process forward.
The Kremlin did not rule out a meeting of Russian President Vladimir Putin with Kerry, press secretary Dmitry Peskov told Interfax in reply to a question on whether the Russian head of state is planning to meet Kerry.
Kerry’s visit to Moscow will be the first since May 2013. Kerry visited Russia in May and held talks in Sochi with President Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.