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Russia explores way to draw UAE, Saudi Arabia to its Syria policies

As relations with Turkey stall, Moscow seeks ways to engage with the Saudis and Emiratis to have them back in the Syrian game.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Arabia's King Salman attend a welcome ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, October 14, 2019. Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool via REUTERS - RC14582F97E0
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As the new round of Russia-Turkish talks in Moscow over Syria’s Idlib province continues, the Kremlin is likely trying to rewrite the rules of the game in Syria by shifting from its long-standing cooperation with Ankara to partnership with the Persian Gulf countries, which, in turn, seek to curb Turkey.

On Feb. 26, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov accused Turkey of bringing foreign fighters into Libya. Earlier that day Bogdanov met with Saudi Ambassador to Moscow Raid bin Khalid Krimli to honor him with an award for his “personal contribution to strengthening Saudi-Russian relations.” Krimli has completed his service in Russia and will be departing Moscow shortly.

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