Russia and Turkey reached agreement on most issues during talks on the Syrian Idlib, said Defense Minister Hulusi Akar.
“Negotiations with the Russian delegation continue, most of the issues were agreed. The presence of our military in Idlib continues, there is no question of their withdrawal”, – NTV quoted Akara as saying.
On March 5, negotiations between the leaders of Russia and Turkey took place in Moscow in connection with the aggravation of the situation in the Syrian province of Idlib. Following the meeting, a joint document was adopted. The parties reaffirmed their commitment to the “Astana format” and announced the introduction of a ceasefire regime from midnight on Friday. The parties agreed to jointly patrol the important M4 highway, which is now under the control of militants.
The situation in Idlib escalated after the February 27 terrorists of the Khayyat Tahrir al-Sham* launched a large-scale attack on the positions of the Syrian government forces. The SAR army returned fire. According to the Russian Ministry of Defense, the Turkish military, who should not have been there, was also shelled.
As a result, 36 soldiers of the Turkish army were killed, more than 30 people were injured. Immediately after receiving information about the injured Turkish military, the Russian side took measures for a complete ceasefire by the Syrian troops, and the safe evacuation of dead and wounded Turkish troops to Turkey was ensured. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation emphasized that aviation of the Russian Aerospace Forces was not used in this area.
Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Turkey was unable to fulfill several key commitments to solve the problems around Syrian Idlib. In particular, she did not dissociate the armed opposition, which is ready for dialogue with the government in the framework of the political process, from terrorists.
So, in the Russian-Turkish memorandum of September 18, 2018, agreed upon by the meeting of Presidents Putin and Erdogan, it was said that the status quo for the presence of the Turkish military was maintained, but provided that all terrorist radical groups were de-escalated from the Idlib zone until October 15, 2018. It was also stipulated that “effective measures will be taken to ensure a stable cessation of hostilities” within the borders of this zone. Clause 7 of the memorandum called for joint Russian-Turkish patrols in the area.
* Terrorist organization banned in Russia.