Russia's Lavrov says U.S. has no intention to leave Syria: RIA

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov speaks during his news conference with Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi (not pictured) at the Diaoyutai State Guest House in Beijing, China, April 23, 2018. Madoka Ikegami/Pool via REUTERS

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday the United States had no intention to leave Syria despite Washington saying it had such plans, the RIA state news agency said.

Lavrov told reporters in Beijing he hoped it would become clearer how to cooperate on settling the Syrian issue after contacts with his counterparts from France.

Commenting on foreign ministers from Group of Seven leading industrialized nations who united on Monday to condemn Russia, Lavrov said they had an obvious “Russophobic rationale,” RIA added.

(This version of the story was refiled to fix paragraph 1 mispunch to “no” instead of “to”)

Reporting by Andrey Ostroukh; Editing by Clarence Fernandez