Amid rising tensions between the US and Russia over Syria, officials from both countries said they were not expecting any major breakthrough in Lausanne.

Photo credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

In an attempt to resolve the ongoing conflict in Syria, US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov have met in Lausanne, Switzerland. However, officials from both countries said they are not expecting any major breakthrough in the talks.

Before leaving for Switzerland, Lavrov told Russian media that he had “no special expectations” for the meeting and that he wanted to “see first to what degree our partners are prepared to comply with UN Security Council resolutions.”

On the US side, not much more optimism was heard. “I certainly don’t want to overplay or underplay our expectations from Lausanne,” said State Department Deputy Spokesman Mark Toner. “The urgent need right now in front of us is some kind of cessation of hostilities, at least a significant reduction in the level of violence, certainly in and around Aleppo, and that’s going to be a primary focus.”

Meanwhile, senior members of the Syrian opposition are also expressing doubt about the effectiveness of the talks, calling them “a further waste of time” in the efforts to end the conflict.