ST. PETERSBURG, Russia -- U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (SEHR'-gay LAHV'-rahf) are heading for a face-to-face showdown as major powers prepare for a weekend conference to hash out a political transition plan aimed at ending the violence in Syria.
Clinton and Lavrov will meet in St. Petersburg late on Friday on the eve of the conference in Geneva in a bid to iron out differences over the transition plan being pushed by U.N. envoy Kofi Annan.
U.S. officials are adamant the plan will not allow Syrian President Bashar Assad to remain in power, but Russia insists that outsiders cannot dictate a solution.
Annan's plan calls for the formation of a national unity government in Syria.
By MATTHEW LEE, Associated Press
The Associated Press