Putin: Should Syria, Free Syrian Army be Allies?

AP LogoMOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin says French President Francois Hollande last week suggested that government forces in Syria form an alliance with the opposition’s Free Syrian Army.

Putin was in Paris on Friday for talks with Hollande as well as the leaders of Germany and Ukraine.

Putin said in televised remarks Wednesday that he found Hollande’s idea “interesting” but insisted Moscow still has too little information on the Free Syrian Army. He says “we still don’t know where it is and who leads it.”

But the Russian leader added that “since (the Free Syrian Army) is supposed to be the combat unit of the so-called healthy opposition, it would create good conditions for a political settlement in Syria if they could join forces against the common enemy, terrorists, the Islamic State, the Nusra Front and others.”

Meanwhile, Russia’s defense minister says his country is using warships in the Caspian Sea to target the Islamic State group in Syria. Russia last week began carrying out airstrikes in Syria in what it said was a pre-emptive operation against terrorism in the Middle East. The defense minister says Russia carried out 26 missile strikes from four warships of its Caspian Sea flotilla this morning

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