MOSCOW, Sept 9 (Reuters) - Syria welcomes a Russian proposal to place the nation's chemical weapons under international control, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem said on Monday after talks in Moscow, praising the Kremlin for seeking to "prevent American aggression".

Moualem, who spoke to reporters through an interpreter after Russia expressed hope the proposal could avert military strikes against Syria, stopped short of saying explicitly that President Bashar al-Assad's government accepted it.

"I state that the Syrian Arab Republic welcomes the Russian initiative, motivated by the Syrian leadership's concern for the lives of our citizens and the security of our country, and also motivated by our confidence in the wisdom of the Russian leadership, which is attempting to prevent American aggression against our people," he said. (Reporting by Alexei Anishchuk; Writing by Steve Gutterman; Editing by Alison Williams)

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  • In this image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, smoke rises from buildings due to heavy artillery shelling in Barzeh, a district of Damascus, Syria, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network via AP video)

  • In this frame grab from video taken Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013, and provided by "CBS This Morning," Syrian President Bashar Assad responds to a question from journalist Charlie Rose during an interview in Damascus, Syria. Assad warned in the interview broadcast Monday on CBS there will be retaliation against the U.S. for any military strike launched in response to the alleged chemical weapons attack. Assad said, "You should expect everything." (AP Photo/CBS This Morning)

  • Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Mouallem speaks to the media after his talks with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, unseen, in Moscow on Monday, Sept. 9, 2013. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

  • Italian journalist Domenico Quirico (C), who was both kidnapped in Syria in early April, answers to journalists after disembark from the airplane on September 9, 2013 at Ciampino military airport in Rome. (ANDREAS SOLARO/AFP/Getty Images)

  • In this Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian military solider fires a heavy machine gun during clashes with rebels in Maaloula village, northeast of the capital Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo/SANA)

  • This Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows a church in Maaloula village, northeast of the capital Damascus, Syria. Rebels including al-Qaida-linked fighters gained control of Maaloula, Syrian activists said Sunday. Government media provided a dramatically different account of the battle suggesting regime forces were winning. It was impossible to independently verify the reports from Maaloula, a scenic mountain community known for being one of the few places in the world where residents still speak the ancient Middle Eastern language of Aramaic. A poster with the portrait of Syrian President Bashar Assad is seen bottom right. (AP Photo/SANA)

  • This citizen journalism image provided by The Syrian Revolution against Bashar Assad which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, a Free Syrian army fighter stands on a damaged military tank in Zabadani, near Damascus, Syria, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/The Syrian Revolution against Bashar Assad)

  • A Syrian man, who requested not to be named, wounded in the ongoing violence in Syria, is hospitalized at Ziv Medical Center in the northern Israeli city of Safed, Israel. The Syrian man is one of 89 victims of the Syrian civil war who have been treated at the hospital this year. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

  • A member of the Syrian Social Nationalist Party holds a portrait of late Syrian President Hafez Assad the father of Bashar Assad during a demonstration against a possible military strike in Syria, in front of the United Nations headquarters, in Beirut, Lebanon, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

  • This citizen journalism image provided by The Syrian Revolution against Bashar Assad which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, a Free Syrian army fighter stands on a damaged military tank in Zabadani, near Damascus, Syria, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/The Syrian Revolution against Bashar Assad)

  • This Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows a general view of Maaloula village, northeast of the capital Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo/SANA)

  • This Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows the entrance of Maaloula village, northeast of the capital Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo/SANA)

  • In this Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian military solider fires a heavy machine gun during clashes with rebels in Maaloula village, northeast of the capital Damascus, Syria.(AP Photo/SANA)

  • In this Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian military solider fires a heavy machine gun during clashes with rebels in Maaloula village, northeast of the capital Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo/SANA)

  • Israeli soldiers are seen near an Iron Dome battery near Jerusalem, Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/Gil Yohanan)

  • A Syrian living in India wraps herself in a Syrian flag and participates in a protest march against a possible U.S.-led attack on Syria, towards the U.S. embassy in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • This Friday, Sept. 6, 2013 citizen journalism image provided by Aleppo Media Center AMC which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows damaged residential buildings from heavy fighting between Free Syrian army fighters and government forces in Aleppo, Syria. (AP Photo/Aleppo Media Center, AMC)

  • A smuggler breaks through the border as he enters Syrian territory near Cilvegozu, Turkey, Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

  • In this citizen journalism image provided by the United media office of Arbeen which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, Syrians inspect damages of a church due to heavy shelling in Arbeen town, a suburb of Damascus, Syria, Friday, Sept. 6, 2013. (AP Photo/United media office of Arbeen)

  • In this Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013 image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, black smoke rises from buildings after a bomb hit Binnish town, Idlib province, Syria. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network via AP video)

  • In this Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013 image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, plums of smoke rise due to heavy shelling in Binnish town, Idlib province, Syria. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network via AP video)