Syria welcomes Russian chemical arms proposal

Reuters

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Syria welcomes a Russian proposal to place the nation's chemical weapons under international control, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem said on Monday after talks in Moscow, praising the Kremlin for seeking to "prevent American aggression."

Moualem, who spoke to reporters through an interpreter after Russia expressed hope the proposal could avert military strikes against Syria, stopped short of saying explicitly that President Bashar al-Assad's government accepted it.

"I state that the Syrian Arab Republic welcomes the Russian initiative, motivated by the Syrian leadership's concern for the lives of our citizens and the security of our country, and also motivated by our confidence in the wisdom of the Russian leadership, which is attempting to prevent American aggression against our people," he said.

(Reporting by Alexei Anishchuk; Writing by Steve Gutterman; Editing by Alison Williams)

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