Russia, US Agree to End Hostilities in Syria

President of Russia Vladimir Putin
President of Russia Vladimir Putin

President of Russia Vladimir Putin said in an address Monday that Russia and the US have agreed to work together for the cessation of hostilities in Syria.

Earlier, Putin had a telephone conversation with the US President Barack Obama on the subject.

Both Russia and the US have adopted a joint statement as co-chairs of the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) on the cessation of hostilities in Syria.

Putin informed that both sides will also use their experience to eliminate chemical weapons from Syria.

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It was agreed that the cessation of hostilities in Syria commences at 00:00 (Damascus time) on February 27, 2016 on terms and conditions that are a part of the Russian-American statement, Putin said.

He further said that by 12:00 pm on February 26, 2016, all parties warring in Syria must indicate to the Russian Federation or its American partners their commitment to the cessation of hostilities.

Russian and American troops will jointly delineate the territories where these groups are active. No military action will be taken against them by the Armed Forces of the Syrian Arab Republic, Russian Armed Forces and the US-led coalition.

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In turn, the opposition will cease all military action against the Armed Forces of the Syrian Arab Republic and other groups supporting them.

ISIS, Jabhat Al-Nursa, and other terrorist organisations designated by the United Nations Security Council, are excluded from the cessation of hostilities. Strikes against them will continue.

It is fundamentally important that Russia and the US, as co-chairs of the ISSG, are prepared to launch effective mechanisms to promote and monitor compliance with the ceasefire by both the Syrian Government and the armed opposition groups, Putin said.

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To achieve this goal, Russia and the US will establish a communication hotline and, if necessary, a working group to exchange relevant information.

Russia will conduct the necessary work with Damascus and the legitimate Syrian leadership and the US is expected do the same with regard to their allies and the groups they support.

The objective, according to Putin, is to create conditions for launching a long-term political process through a broad inter-Syrian dialogue in Geneva, under the auspices of the UN.

Photo courtesy: Kremlin

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