Turkey and Russia agree on Syria ceasefire
Turkey and Russia have reached an agreement on the plan of a comprehensive ceasefire in Syria, the Turkish state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Dec. 28.
The agreement envisages establishing ceasefire from midnight on Dec. 29, does not cover the terrorist organizations and is in the framework of the UN Security Council’s Resolution 2254.
The plan will be in force in all areas of Syria where the fighting is underway between the government forces and armed opposition groups. It will be presented to the parties to the Syrian conflict.
According to the report, if the ceasefire deal is implemented, the talks on political settlement of the conflict will be held in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana. Moscow and Ankara will act as guarantors of the settlement.
Over the past several days, the Russian and Turkish foreign ministers, Sergey Lavrov and Mevlut Cavusoglu, have held intense phone conversations devoted to the Syrian crisis and the meeting of representatives of the Syrian government and the opposition in Astana.
On Tuesday, Cavusoglu discussed the preparation for the intra-Syrian talks with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif. A week ago, Lavrov, Cavusoglu and Zarif held a trilateral meeting in Moscow and agreed on a joint statement on the political settlement in Syria.
Qadri Jamil, leader of the Popular Front for Change and Liberation and representative of the "Moscow group" of the Syrian opposition, earlier told TASS that the talks between the Syrian government and opposition in Astana will be held in the second half of January 2017. The effort will be continued in Geneva, where UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura plans to launch the next round of talks on Feb. 8.