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After Putin victory, Russia’s Syria stance remains

MOSCOW (AP) – A top Russian diplomat says Moscow is remaining firm in its policy on the Syria crisis and urging the West to press the Syrian opposition to stop fighting Bashar Assad’s regime.

Moscow last month blocked a U.N. Security Council resolution against Damascus and accused the West of fueling the conflict by backing the opposition.

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told reporters Tuesday that “we are deeply convinced that we are right” and that the opposition should be urged to renounce violence.

Germany’s foreign minister said Monday that he hopes Russia will recognize that it is on “the wrong side of history” and rethink its stance on Syria now that Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has won Sunday’s presidential election.

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