The Moscow Times: CIA Director made secret trip to Moscow in March

00:45, 29 March 2016
World
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Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov says that John Brennan, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), made a secret visit to Moscow in March, according to The Moscow Times.

REUTERS

The visit, he said, had nothing to do with Russia's decision two weeks ago to begin withdrawing from Syria, The Moscow Times wrote.

"It’s no secret that Brennan was here," Syromolotov said on Monday. "But he didn't visit the Foreign Ministry. I know for sure that he met with the Federal Security Service [the successor agency to the Soviet KGB], and someone else."

It wasn't clear why Brennan visited Moscow, but the trip appears to have coincided with President Vladimir Putin's surprise March 14 announcement that Russia's combat operation in Syria was ending, and Moscow would soon withdraw a portion of its forces from the country after conducting 167 air strikes.

The decision to withdraw was followed by a visit of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to Moscow last week. While in Russia, Kerry met personally with Putin and his foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov.

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