Trump invites Putin to US

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The news agency quoted Lavrov as saying Trump returned to the subject of an invitation a couple of times during a call last month and that Russian Federation was now expecting Trump to formalize the invitation.

"What happened last week did not help Astana, Sochi, or Geneva", he stressed.

De Mistura said he was pleased to hear that there is a "strong commitment" from Russian Federation to the political process. "That is why, the follow-up to Sochi, work in Astana on de-escalation and discussion in Geneva on constitutional committee and elections, is a priority", de Mistura told reporters after meeting with Russia's foreign minister in Moscow.

"Now we have no such moral obligation", he remarked.

It was the first meeting between Bolton, who started at the White House this month, and Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov, the administration said in a statement.

De Mistura pointed out that apart from Moscow, he had visited Riyadh and Ankara over the past week, and plans to hold talks in Tehran, too, in bid to "lower the temperature" in Syria. "Russia falsely claimed Syria air defense shot down a significant number of missiles when, in fact, all of our missiles hit their targets".

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De Mistura said that chemical weapons inspectorsin Douma, Syria, should do their job as quickly as possible and without any interference. The sooner the better. Preparatory work for the meeting is not going ahead, however, and Lavrov said Moscow would announce it if the possibility for a meeting draws nearer.

Further stoking tensions was the purported chemical attack in Douma on 7 April.

The United States and European allies launched airstrikes on April 14 against Syrian research, storage and military targets under the pretext of a suspected chemical attack near Damascus last weekend that killed more than 40 people.

Syrian forces used Soviet-era air defense systems and fired 112 surface-to-air missiles to repel the US -led strikes, destroying 71 out of the 103 missiles launched by the Western coalition last week, according to the Russian Defense Ministry.

"At present, we do not know when the FFM team can be deployed to Douma", the OPCW chief added, referring to his organization's fact-finding mission.

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