Vladimir Putin
Russian president Vladimir Putin said he wants to find peaceful resolution in Syria Ria Novosti

Russian president Vladimir Putin has said he expects to host a further round of peace talks between the Syrian government and some opposition figures and hopes a peaceful resolution to the four-year conflict can be reached.

Putin held a Moscow summit for representatives from Bashar al-Assad's government and some of its opponents in January but the talks were shunned by the major opposition factions fighting against the Syrian regime.

"We look forward... to the next round of such talks, which ultimately I hope will lead to a peaceful settlement of the situation in Syria," he said on Tuesday 10 February in Cairo, where he was meeting Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the Egyptian president.

A new round of talks is expected to take place in Moscow around the end of February.

Meanwhile, the Syrian president gave a rare television interview to the Western media this week, in which he told the BBC he had been receiving intelligence regarding the US aerial campaign against Islamic State in northern Syria.

Assad said there was some cooperation with the US, albeit in an indirect manner through a third party.

"That's true, through third parties, more than one party, Iraq and other countries, sometimes they convey a message, a general message, but there is nothing tactical," he said.

Syria's government security forces are engaged in their own campaign against militant groups, including IS, which has declared an Islamic caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria.

The US has led a bombing campaign against IS but has always ruled out the involvement of Assad in the anti-IS campaign, arguing the president is not part of the solution in Syria.

Russia has remained a key backer of the Syrian regime since anti-government protests swelled into a nationwide rebellion in 2011. Assad's security forces tried to put the rebellion down with such brutality that it sparked a civil war.

More than 200,000 people have been killed in the conflict, which has shown no signs of abating in the near or medium term.

Russia, like Assad, insists that putting an end to terrorism is the key priority in Syria.