Putin, Saudi King seek solution to Syria crisis

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a meeting of members of the Valdai International Discussion Club in Sochi on October 22, 2015 (AFP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Moscow (AFP) - Russian President Vladimir Putin held phone talks Monday with King Salman of Saudi Arabia focussed on seeking a solution to the Syria crisis, the Kremlin said.

The call was a Saudi initiative, the Kremlin said in statement.

The two exchanged views on "all the questions associated with resolving the Syrian crisis, including four-way talks," between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his US, Turkish and Saudi counterparts, it said.

The four foreign ministers met in Vienna last Friday but failed to make any major breakthrough on how to end the Syrian conflict, with the sides sharply at odds on Assad's future.

Washington and Riyadh are part of a US-led coalition that last year launched an air campaign targeting the Islamic State jihadist group which controls swathes of territory in Syria and neighbouring Iraq.

Russia launched its own aerial campaign on September 30 in response to a request from Damascus.

Washington, Riyadh and Ankara back groups fighting the regime of Russia ally President Bashar al-Assad, while Moscow says it is targeting IS and other "terrorists" in Syria.

Putin and the Saudi King also discussed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"The two parties expressed their concern at the growing deterioration in the situation," the Kremlin said.