France FM in Beijing to discuss Syria

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Associated Press

Posted on September 14, 2013 at 10:03 PM

Updated Saturday, Sep 14 at 11:04 PM

BEIJING (AP) — France's foreign minister is visiting Beijing to meet with his Chinese counterpart to discuss the situation in Syria.

Laurent Fabius was due to meet Wang Yi on Sunday in a continuing diplomatic drive to end the two-and-a-half-year civil war.

France firmly backs the Syrian rebels and has strategic and historic interests in the region. It urged military action after an alleged chemical attack on Aug. 21 that it and the U.S. blamed on President Bashar Assad's government.

In contrast, China and Russia have consistently blocked resolutions at the U.N. Security Council aimed at sanctioning Assad's regime.

On Saturday, U.S. and Russian diplomats in Geneva agreed on a deal to secure and destroy Syria's chemical weapons stockpile, averting the threat of military action for now.

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