The Main Stream

Jun 19, 2012 1:43 AM

Obama: Putin talks candid, tensions can be eased

LOS CABOS, MEXICO - President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin say Syrians should choose their own next government.

Their comments mark a subtle shift for both countries as they confront the prospect that Russia's main ally in the Mideast could slide into civil war.

Obama and Putin met for two hours on the sidelines of the G-20 economic summit. It is the first time they have met since the Russian leader returned to the presidency last month.

The two leaders agreed on the need to create a political process in Syria to prevent civil war.

Putin said he and Obama had "many commonalities" on Syria. But he offered no specifics and it was unclear how much the talks did to close strategic gaps about how to end the violence in Syria.

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