Putin Said to Explore Sidelining Assad Even as He Arms Him

Updated on
  • Russia in whirlwind talks with U.S., Saudis, Syrian opposition
  • Arms buildup may be Russian bargaining chip for peace talks

A view of former Syrian army MiG-23 fighter jets at the Abu Duhur military airport, the last regime-held military base in northwestern Idlib province.

Photographer: Omar Haj Kadour/AFP via Getty Images

Russia is sending signals to the U.S. and Saudi Arabia that it may allow Syria’s embattled leader Bashar al-Assad to be eased out of power as it seeks to forge a united front against Islamic State and retain influence in the region, officials and Syrian opposition leaders said.

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