Putin May Become France's Partner in Anti-ISIL Fight – Hollande
Currently, Russian President Vladimir Putin is not an ally of France in Syria, but he may become a partner in search of a political resolution to the Syrian crisis and in fight with the Islamic State militants, French President Francois Hollande said Sunday.
PARIS (Sputnik) – On Friday, during the Normandy Four summit in Paris Putin discussed the progress of Russia's anti-ISIL air campaign in Syria with his French counterpart Francois Hollande, stressing that other countries should contribute to the work of the information center in Baghdad.
'No, at the moment, he is not our ally, he is an ally of [Syrian President] Bashar Assad. But tomorrow he may – and I would like it, as I have said to him – become a partner in the search of a political solution and in conducting airstrikes on Islamic State,' Hollande said in an interview with the Arte television channel.
Russia, Syria, Iran and Iraq agreed last week to cooperate on security and intelligence sharing in Syria and set up an information center in Baghdad to coordinate efforts.
On Wednesday, Russia launched first airstrikes on ISIL positions in Syria at Assad's request.
Syria has been in a state of civil war since 2011. The country's government forces are fighting a number of opposition groups, as well as radical Islamist militant organizations, including the Nusra Front and ISIL.
In late September, France conducted its first airstrikes in Syria as part of a US-led international coalition.
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