Kremlin says Erdogan explained his comments on Syria to Putin

December 1, 2016 3:57 AM EST

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a conference in Istanbul, Turkey, November 25, 2016. Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Palace/Handout via REUTERS

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MOSCOW (Reuters) - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan explained his comments about a plan to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in a phone call with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, the RIA news agency cited Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov as saying on Thursday.

Erdogan said earlier this week his forces in Syria were there to topple Assad, a statement which came as a surprise to Moscow. Ushakov gave no details about what kind of explanation Erdogan provided.

The Kremlin late on Wednesday said Putin and Erdogan spoke on the phone and discussed issues relating to Syria, particularly the city of Aleppo.

(Reporting by Maria Kiselyova; Writing by Andrey Ostroukh; Editing by Jack Stubbs)

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