American officials reportedly held secret talks with Syria in 2011 to attempt limiting the violence in President Bashar al-Assad’s government, The Wall Street Journal reports. The communications reportedly explored ways to boost a potential military coup that year as the civil war began, according to the Journal article. The Obama administration allegedly moved away from the meetings and trying to influence Syria in 2012 and instead supported Syrian rebels. The newspaper reported that officials sent messages through Russia and Iran or spoke directly to each other during the communications.
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