Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Russia was "no less concerned than the United States over the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria" as he pledged to hold an international peace conference to look for a political solution to the ongoing crisis in the country.
Speaking at a joint press conference with US Secretary of State John Kerry he said:
"Russia and the United States will encourage both the Syrian government and the opposition groups to look for a political solution.
"We have also agreed on the need to try and hold, as soon as possible, probably even at the end of this month, an international conference as a follow-up to the Geneva conference which took place in June last year in Geneva.
"We are no less concerned than the United States over the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria. This subject is extremely complicated and extremely responsible. One should be one hundred percent sure that we are not the captives of rumours or even deliberate provocations."
More top news
A team of detectives and specialists is set to begin a painstaking excavation of the area where Ben is thought to have gone missing in 1991.
The foreign secretary's suggestion last week's bombing of an aid convoy might constitute a war crime prompted an angry response from Moscow.
Goals from Charlie Austin, Dusan Tadic and James Ward-Prowse consigned Slaven Bilic's men to their fourth straight Premier League loss.