MOSCOW Dec 9 Russia said on Sunday it was not
holding any talks on the future of Syrian President Bashar
al-Assad, dismissing speculation that it is preparing for its
ally's potential exit from power.
"We are not holding any talks on the fate of Assad,"
Itar-Tass news agency quoted Russian Foreign Minister Sergei
Lavrov as saying during a meeting on Sunday.
"All attempts to present the situation differently are
rather shady, even for the diplomacy of those countries that are
known for striving to distort facts in their own favour," it
quoted him as saying. He also said countries criticising Russia
and China for vetoing U.N. Security Council resolutions on Syria