12:07 Jul. 14, 2016
U.S. Secretary attempts to persuade Russia to help establish a lasting settlement in Syria
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is traveling to Moscow to offer greater military cooperation against the Islamic State (IS) extremist group in exchange for Russia and Syria starting a political transition to a new government, media reported on July 13.
Kerry is due to start a two-day visit to the Russian capital on July 14, with Syria's civil war and the future of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad at the top of the agenda, along with the crisis in Ukraine.
Kerry will meet with President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
The Washington Post reported on July 13 that Kerry carries with him a major new proposal to cooperate in trying to defeat IS and Al-Qaeda's Syrian affiliate, Al-Nusra Front.
"The United States is suggesting a new military command-and-control headquarters to coordinate the air campaign that would house U.S. and Russian military officers, intelligence officials, and subject-matter experts," the newspaper said.
"The proposed Joint Implementation Group would be housed near Amman, Jordan," it said.
Kerry's attempts to persuade Russia to help establish a lasting settlement in Syria have been repeatedly frustrated. But he is trying once again "to try to resuscitate the cessation of hostilities," State Department spokesman Mark Toner said on July 13.