February 11, 2016 / 6:10 PM / 3 years ago

Russia raises spectre of "world war" if nations fail to negotiate over Syria

MUNICH, Feb 11 (Reuters) - Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said all powers must sit at the negotiating table to forge an end to the war in Syria “instead of unleashing a new world war”.

“The Americans and our Arab partners must think well: do they want a permanent war?” Medvedev told Germany’s Handelsblatt newspaper, due to be published on Friday. It would be impossible to win such a war quickly, he said according to a German translation of his words, “especially in the Arab world, where everybody is fighting against everybody”.

“All sides must be compelled to sit at the negotiating table instead of unleashing a new world war,” he said.

He said the United States and Russia must exert pressure on all sides in the conflict in order to secure a ceasefire.

Russia is carrying out bombing sorties around the key city of Aleppo, in support of advances by troops loyal to President Bashar al-Assad. U.S. and other Western air forces are also involved in air strikes in northern Syria. (Reporting by John Irish, Writing by Joseph Nasr, Editing by Ralph Boulton)

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