Aug 5, 2019, 12:32 AM
Journalist ID: 2382
News Code: 83424885
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Effort to restore ceasefire in Syria's Idlib most important gain of Astana summit

Beirut, Aug 4, IRNA - Some Syrian figures, speaking with IRNA about thirteenth Astana meeting in Nursultan city of Kazakhstan, called the efforts to restore a ceasefire in Idlib province in northwestern Syria as the most significant achievement of the summit.

This round of talks in Astana was held August 1-2 with representatives of the Syrian government and its opposition, representatives of the sponsoring countries (Iran, Russia, and Turkey) and some representatives of international organizations such as the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross in Nursultan city, the capital of Kazakhstan.

The 13th Astana meeting is one of the ways that the Syrian government is using to oblige Turkey to fulfill its commitments, Syrian parliamentarian Mohand Ali told IRNA with regard to the meeting.

Turkey has occupied a large part of Syrian territory, and everyone is aware of its role in the invasion of Syria because it has opened its borders to armed terrorist groups and provided them with weapons, he said.

The Syrian lawmaker went on to say that the Syrian government is trying to oblige Turkey through its diplomatic and political solutions and through the Astana summit.

** National reconciliation in Syria

Khayyam al-Zaabi, a professor of international relations at Al-Furat University in Syria, also in an interview with IRNA, highlighted that the recent talks were important and noted the recent talks included a comprehensive resolution of the Syrian crisis, meaning that the Syrian government is stressing on a ceasefire in Idlib, on condition of terrorists' withdrawal to a depth of 2 km of the de-escalation zone under the Sochi agreement.

The Sochi-September summit of 2016 was held between the leaders of the two Russian and Turkish states for an agreement on Idlib, and has failed due to terrorists’ rejection of Turkish demands to hand over weapons.

The Syrian university professor emphasized that the greatest victories for the Syrians are the victories of national reconciliation in different areas of the country, stating the inhabitants of different Syrian provinces, especially Idlib, have been calling the government to fight the terrorists and destroy the group and it is the responsibility of the Syrian government to put an end to terrorism in any form in Idlib.

Currently, the cessation of conflict in Idlib province in northwestern Syria and 11% of its territory is subject to the Sochi agreement to be implemented. According to the agreement, the terrorists should retreat about 20 kilometers from the depth of the tension reduction zone line in Idlib and while handing over heavy and semi-heavy weapons only carry individual weapons.

Meanwhile, Syrian opposition leader Ahmed Toma at the 13th Astana summit also made allegations broadcast by the Al Jazeera network against the Syrian government over implementation of the Sochi agreement that the final constitutional committee would be formed soon. He called the formation of the committee an important step in resolving the crisis.

According to Kazakhstan Foreign Ministry, hosting the Astana summit, the negotiating groups agreed to form a constitutional committee for the Syrian constitution and a ceasefire in the northwestern province of Idlib.

Bashar al-Jaafari, the head of the Syrian delegation attending the Astana Summit, also welcomed the final statement of the summit on Syria, emphasizing that it is better for Syria in terms of political content and existing situation.

He reiterated that "we did not witness the sincere and impartial implementation of the Sochi agreement by Turkey", which emphasized the withdrawal of terrorist groups up to 20 kilometers deep and the removal of heavy and medium weapons.


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