MOSCOW (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry is making his case to Russian President Vladimir Putin for Russia to take a tougher stance on Syria at a time when Israel's weekend air strikes against the beleaguered Mideast nation have added an unpredictable factor to the talks.
Kerry arrived Tuesday in Moscow for talks with the most powerful ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime.
Officials said Kerry hopes to change Moscow's thinking on Syria with two new angles: American threats to arm the Syrian rebels and evidence of chemical weapon attacks by the Assad regime.
Over the weekend, Israeli warplanes targeted what Israel claimed were caches of Iranian missiles bound for Hezbollah, the Lebanon-based terror group. Such weapons would allow Hezbollah to strike Tel Aviv and as far as southern Israel from inside Lebanese territory.
Israel's willingness to hit Syrian targets it sees as threats to its own existence has complicated the Obama administration's internal debate over what to do about Syria.