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PM: West 'contracting morality to Russian veto'

If the West waits for a UN resolution until intervening in Syria, Britain would be "contracting out our foreign policy, our morality, to the potential of a Russian veto," David Cameron said in response to a question from ITV News deputy political editor Chris Ship.

"I think that is a very misguided approach," he said, describing last night's debate as "frustrating."

PM: There was never going to be Syria agreement at G20

David Cameron said because there was never going to be an agreement on military action at the G20 summit, Britain decided to focus its effort on securing more humanitarian aid for the crisis in Syria.

He said the the case made by those countries who believed there was a need to make a stand was "extremely powerful."

He reiterated that Britain will not be part of any military action.

Putin: Syria videos were 'provocation by militants'

Putin speaking at a press conference after the G20 summit in St Petersburg.

Russian president Vladimir Putin has said he is concerned about the effect of the Syrian conflict on the world economy.

He said video evidence of alleged chemical attacks in Syria was "provocation by the militants who expect to get help [from the West]."

He added that surveys had shown that people in the US and other Western countries were against military intervention in Syria.

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Kremlin: Russia and US no closer to Syria agreement

Putin passes Obama as world leaders pose for their G20 group photograph. Credit: DPA

US president Barack Obama and Russian president Vladimir Putin met for 20 minutes on the sidelines of a G20 summit today but remained at odds over the conflict in Syria, Putin's senior foreign policy adviser said.

"They sat down before today's working session, in armchairs, and had a 20-minute chat, one on one," the adviser, Yuri Ushakov, told Reuters.

He said Syria was the main topic and said: "No, their (positions) have not come closer."

US orders diplomats to leave Lebanon

The US State Department said it had evacuated non-emergency personnel and family members from its embassy in the Lebanese capital Beirut, as Congress debates a military strike on neighbouring Syria.

"The Department of State drew down non-emergency personnel and family members from Embassy Beirut due to threats to US Mission facilities and personnel," a statement on the Beirut embassy's website said.

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