France to host Syria talks on Tuesday

PARIS - France is organising a meeting on Syria to take place in Paris on Tuesday, involving its "principal regional partners", a foreign ministry spokesman said.

"We are working to organise a new meeting involving the principal regional partners this Tuesday in Paris," the spokesman told AFP, without specifying who would take part.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius announced on Friday that he wanted to bring together several of his counterparts from Western and Arab countries to discuss the Syrian crisis.

"I invited our German, British, Saudi and American friends, and others, to Paris next week... to try to move things forward," said Fabius.

His comments came on the same day that leaders from Russia, the United States, Turkey and Saudi Arabia gathered in Vienna, notably in the absence of France.

Fabius said the meeting in Paris would not include Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

"There are other meetings where we will work with the Russians," he said.

His entourage said Turkey and Saudi Arabia were invited to Paris, but not Iran, which is closely allied to Russia and the Syrian government.