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Ceasefire starts in northwestern Syria’s Idlib province

A ceasefire came into effect early Friday in northwestern Syria’s Idlib province following a meeting between Turkish and Russian leaders in Moscow.

According to the protocol agreed by Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his counterpart Vladimir Putin, the ceasefire began at 00:01 on March 6.

Under the protocol, Turkey and Russia, as guarantor countries to observe the ceasefire, recalled the memorandum on the creation of de‑escalation areas in Syria as of May 4, 2017 and the memorandum on stabilization of the situation in the Idlib de-escalation area as of Sept. 17, 2018.

During Thursday’s meeting, the two countries reaffirmed their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Syria.

They also “reaffirmed their determination to combat all forms of terrorism and to eliminate all terrorist groups in Syria as designated by the UN Security Council, while agreeing that targeting of civilians and civilian infrastructure cannot be justified under any pretext.”

A security corridor will be established 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) north and 6 kilometers south from Idlib’s key M4 highway, according to the protocol.

“The specific parameters of the functioning of the security corridor will be agreed between the defense ministries of Turkey and Russia within seven days,” it noted.

Joint Turkish-Russian patrols will begin on March 15 along the M4 highway from the settlement of Trumba — 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) to the west of Saraqib — to the settlement of Ain-Al-Havr, the protocol said.

Following the meeting in Moscow, Erdogan returned to Turkey.


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