The Obama administration plans to accept an offer from Russia for direct talks on its military buildup in Syria that U.S. officials believe is aimed at propping up Syrian President Bashar Assad. The move comes amid increasing unease and uncertainty over Russia’s intentions.
Seeking answers to myriad questions about the precise reasoning behind Moscow’s recent deliveries of materiel and manpower to a base in northern Syria, U.S. officials said they expect the administration to begin a military-to-military dialogue with Russia in the coming days. The Pentagon will take the lead in the discussions but the exact level, venue and timing have yet to be determined, officials said. Those details could be announced as early as Wednesday, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.