The director of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency raised the issue of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad leaving power when he visited Moscow at the start of March, RIA news agency said on Monday, citing the U.S. Embassy in Russia.
CIA Director John Brennan also discussed the observance of the ceasefire in Syria, the news agency said.
Dean Boyd, the CIA's chief spokesman, confirmed to Reuters that Brennan had visited Moscow in early March and that Syrian issues were on the agenda. It is unusual for the CIA publicly to discuss its chief's travels or the subjects of his discussions with foreign officials.
Russia's Interfax news agency quoted Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov as saying earlier on Monday that Brennan had meetings at Russia's Federal Security Service, among other places, and his visit was not linked to the decision by Moscow to begin withdrawing its forces from Syria.
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