Jordan’s king to visit Moscow for Syria talks
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Jordan’s king to visit Moscow for Syria talks

Royal palace says Abdullah’s meeting with Putin will focus on Syrian crisis, Israeli-Palestinian peace process

Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) welcomes King Abdullah II of Jordan (L) during their meeting at the Kremlin in Moscow, on October 2, 2014. (Sergei Ilnitsky/AFP photo)
Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) welcomes King Abdullah II of Jordan (L) during their meeting at the Kremlin in Moscow, on October 2, 2014. (Sergei Ilnitsky/AFP photo)

AMMAN, Jordan — Jordan’s King Abdullah II will visit Moscow on Wednesday for talks with President Vladimir Putin on the Syrian crisis and “the fight against terrorism,” a palace statement said.

The two leaders will discuss “developments in the Middle East, especially the Syrian crisis and the peace process” between Israel and the Palestinians, Tuesday’s statement said.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi was also set to meet his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow on Tuesday, the official Petra News Agency reported.

The meetings come as Syrian regime and rebel delegates hold indirect peace talks in Kazakhstan, organized by regime backers Russia and Iran and rebel sponsor Turkey.

From left: Turkish Foreign Ministry Deputy Undersecretary Sedat Onal, Russia's special envoy on Syria Alexander Lavrentiev, Kazakh Foreign Minister Kairat Abdrakhmanov, UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura and Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Jaber Ansari pose after the announcement of a final statement following Syria peace talks in Astana on January 24, 2017. (AFP Photo/Kirill Kudryavtsev)
From left: Turkish Foreign Ministry Deputy Undersecretary Sedat Onal, Russia’s special envoy on Syria Alexander Lavrentiev, Kazakh Foreign Minister Kairat Abdrakhmanov, UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura and Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Jaber Ansari pose after the announcement of a final statement following Syria peace talks in Astana on January 24, 2017. (AFP Photo/Kirill Kudryavtsev)

The three sponsors of the talks agreed Tuesday to establish a joint “mechanism” to monitor the frail truce in Syria.

Jordan has consistently called for a “comprehensive political solution” to the crisis in its northern neighbor that erupted in 2011.

Amman is one of the few Arab capitals that still has diplomatic relations with Damascus.

The two countries share a 370-kilometer (230-mile) border, but Jordan closed the final crossing point in 2015 after rebels seized the Syrian side.

It has also sealed its frontier with Iraq.

Young Syrian refugees stand at the Azraq refugee camp in northern Jordan on January 30, 2016. (Khalil Mazraawi/AFP)
Young Syrian refugees stand at the Azraq refugee camp in northern Jordan on January 30, 2016. (Khalil Mazraawi/AFP)

The Jordanian economy has been hard hit by the Syrian crisis, particularly the burden of hosting hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria.

The United Nations says it has registered 650,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan, but authorities say as many as 1.3 million are now living there.

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