The Yeni Safak newspaper quoted a senior Turkish official as saying that Russia and Turkey are discussing the possibility of joint patrols in Idlib, Syria.
The paper notes that the joint patrol is seen as one of the options to ensure stability in the region. According to the newspaper, Russia, Turkey and Iran will discuss the settlement in Idlib in March at a meeting in Tehran, before which a Russian delegation may come to Ankara.
According to the Russian-Turkish memorandum of 22 October 2019, joint Russian-Turkish patrols of the Turkish and SAR border section, in particular, in the provinces of Hasekei, Rakka and Aleppo, began.
Earlier, Turkish leader Tayyip Erdogan stated that Turkey has not yet received a satisfactory result in the talks with Russia on Syrian Idlib and is ready to start a military operation in the region. Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov called this the worst-case scenario.
Erdogan said earlier that he called on his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to put pressure on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to stop the Syrian army offensive in the province of Idlib and withdraw from the Turkish observation points by the end of February, threatening otherwise with a military response.
According to the agreement reached at the May 2017 talks in Astana (now Nur-Sultan) by representatives of Russia, Iran and Turkey, four de-escalation zones were established in Syria. The territory of three of these zones was taken over by Damascus in 2018. The fourth zone, located in the province of Idlib and parts of the neighbouring provinces of Latakia, Hama and Aleppo, remains outside the government’s control. However, most of it was captured by terrorists from the Jabhat al-Nusra group. In September 2018, Russia and Turkey agreed in Sochi to establish a demilitarized zone in Idlib, where more than a dozen different formations are located.