Strategic cooperation against terrorism 2.0? Collaborating with adversaries. 2:2
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In October 2016, international media reported that the Russia– US diplomatic dialogue over Syria had collapsed, with both sides holding the other party to blame. While the US State Department observed that ‘everybody’s patience with Russia has run out’, Russia’s Foreign Minister criticized the United States for using ‘a language of sanctions and ultimatums while continuing selective cooperation with our country’ (CNN 2016). The breakdown and the statements that ensued marked the endpoint of a turbulent diplomatic year, which had begun with a brief handshake between presidents Obama and Putin at the UN General Assembly late in September 2015. In the months following that handshake, Russia and the US-led coalition participated in talks and activities aimed at finding a negotiated solution to the civil war in Syria as well as to defeat international terrorism there.