Sochi meeting of Turkey, Russia, Iran presidents important for region's future: Erdogan

Turkish army chief in Sochi as 'mission impossible' kicks off

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Assad thanked Putin for Russia's help in fighting terrorism and maintaining Syria's territorial integrity, according to the transcript.

"There is already a planned talk with the Emir of Qatar today and tomorrow (another one) with the president of the United States Donald Trump", Putin told Assad on Monday.

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Mr Putin hosted Mr Assad in the Black Sea resort of Sochi yesterday. Yesterday's meeting was unannounced and the Kremlin did not make it public until this morning.

It was the second time Assad has traveled to Russian Federation to meet with Putin in the course of the country's six-year civil war. The protests developed into an armed uprising and a civil war that has killed hundreds of thousands of people and displaced millions.

The first was in October 2015, shortly before Russian Federation launched its military campaign in Syria to shore up Assad's forces.

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Iran, Russia and Turkey have so far held seven rounds of peace talks in Kazakhstan to help end the conflict in Syria.

A Kremlin statement issued after the meeting quoted Putin as saying he would be phoning Trump on Tuesday, along with leaders of other countries involved in the Syrian conflict, such as Iraq, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke for "a little over an hour" Tuesday morning, discussing a range of pressing worldwide concerns a day after Putin met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a White House official told CNN. The meeting of the top diplomats laid the groundwork for a summit of Russian, Iranian and Turkish Presidents in Sochi on November 22 as they spearheaded a ceasefire initiative in war-torn Syria through Astana process.

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