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Putin Reiterates Russia's Support To Syrian Regime

President Vladimir Putin has said that Russia's "policy to support Syria, the Syrian leadership, and the Syrian people remains unchanged."

Putin was speaking at a meeting with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem at the Kremlin on June 29.

At a press conference with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, Muallem said he had been assured that "Russia will continue to help Syria politically, economically, and militarily."

Putin also exhorted all Middle East countries to "pool their efforts together" to fight Islamic militants, especially the Islamic State extremist group, which holds large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq.

Moscow has been a key backer of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

The Syrian war, which began with antigovernment protests in March 2011, has killed more than 220,000 people.

Based on reporting by AFP, AP, and Reuters