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What to watch for when President Obama, Putin meet to tackle Syrian crisis




U.S. President Barack Obama addresses the 70th annual United Nations General Assembly at the UN headquarters September 28, 2015 in New York City.
U.S. President Barack Obama addresses the 70th annual United Nations General Assembly at the UN headquarters September 28, 2015 in New York City.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

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Obama and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin will meet today for the first time in more than a year.

The one-on-one meeting is expected to focus on efforts to resolve the growing conflicts in Syria and Ukraine. But it will likely be a chance for the two to discuss what Russia is willing to do to combat Islamist extremism and establish a plan for the conflict in Syria.  

The meeting was requested by Putin on Thursday, however it is still unclear what its focus will be.

The White House has said the meeting will focus on eastern Ukraine, where Russian forces are fighting the Kiev government. However,  Putin’s officials have said the focus will be on Syria where Russia has built up its military forces in recent weeks in support of President Bashar al-Assad.

Guests:

Michael Viqueira, senior Washington correspondent for Al Jazeera America

Nina Tumarkin, Professor of History and Director of Russian Area Studies, Wellesley College; author of “The Living and the Dead: The Rise and Fall of the Cult of World War II in Russia”