Kerry in Moscow for talks on Syria, Ukraine

MOSCOW: US Secretary of State John Kerry opened talks in Moscow on Tuesday with Russia's foreign minister to try to narrow broad gaps on ways to end Syria's civil war and restore stability in eastern Ukraine.

Kerry was meeting his counterpart Sergey Lavrov before seeing Russian President Vladimir Putin in what are expected to be difficult discussions over the ways ahead in each crisis.

Russia and the US are at odds over the mechanics of a political transition aimed at halting the war in Syria as well as the military approach to fighting the Islamic State group. On Ukraine, the two countries are split over the implementation of a February agreement meant to end hostilities between the Kiev government and Russian-backed separatists in the east.

At the opening of the meeting, Kerry said Moscow and Washington agree that the Islamic State insurgent group in Syria and Iraq "is a threat to everybody, to every country. They are the worst of terrorists. They attack culture and history and all decency."