The United States, Russia, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and possibly Qatar will meet on Saturday, 15 October for a new round of diplomatic talks on Syria, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told CNN on Wednesday. The talks will take place in Lausanne, Switzerland.
The UK and other European countries will be excluded from the meeting in Lausanne but Kerry is expected to brief European foreign ministers in London on Sunday. The announcement also comes at a time when two days of renewed air strikes on Aleppo killed at least 75 people.
The US State Department said that Secretary of State John Kerry, will meet with his foreign counterparts in Lausanne to "discuss a multilateral approach to resolving the crisis in Syria, including a sustained cessation of violence and the resumption of humanitarian aid deliveries".
Earlier, Russia's Lavrov told CNN's Christiane Amanpour, "We would like to have a meeting in this narrow format, to have a businesslike discussion, not another General Assembly-like debate," referring to the UN General Assembly.
He added that he hoped the meeting could "launch a serious dialogue on the basis of the principles contained in the Russian-American deal."
Washington called off all talks nine days ago amid tensions over the failure to secure a peace deal. When asked by Amanpour about the deal, Lavrov blamed the US for the collapse of the ceasefire. "The violation of the ceasefire happened by the American coalition who attacked the Syrian government, which they were not supposed to do, and which they said they would never plan."
The deal fell through after US-led coalition warplanes hit a Syrian army post killing dozens of troops. The US military later expressed regret over the strike saying its intention was to strike the Islamic State (Isis) and not Syrian forces. After the ceasefire ended, a UN aid convoy was hit by an air strike killing at least 20 people. Washington blamed Russia for the strike while Moscow rejected the allegations that either Russian or Syrian warplanes were responsible.
The Guardian citing the CNN interview said that the Russian foreign minister mocked UK's Boris Johnson, who was the first official to call out Russia publicly for taking part in the bombing of the aid convoy on 19 September. Lavrov accused Johnson of arrogance and being a "Jack of all trades", going from being a mayor and a "friend of Russia" to "getting ready to become to some kind of international recognised prosecutor general in the Hague".
A French initiative to secure a ceasefire agreement at the United Nations Security Council on the weekend was vetoed by Russia on the grounds that there was no commitment that the jihadi forces in eastern Aleppo would leave the city.