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Putin To Meet With UN Leaders, Former French President

Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura in St. Petersburg on June 16.

Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters in Moscow on June 14 that the meetings would occur on the sidelines of Moscow's yearly economic forum.

Putin also plans an informal meeting with former French President Nicolas Sarkozy at the St. Petersburg forum on June 15.

The meetings with the UN leaders will focus on "the fight against global terrorism and the situation in Syria," Ushakov said.

Ban told TASS in an interview that Russia has played a key role along with the United States in efforts to forge peace in Syria.

"Increased cooperation between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has had a positive impact," he said. "Only compromise, dialogue, and a collective effort by the international community, with Russia as a key member of this community, can be the way forward."

Ban added that "the talks in Geneva are by all accounts some of the most complex and difficult negotiations the United Nations is involved in."

Based on reporting by Reuters and TASS