SOCHI, February 14./TASS/. Russia, Iran and Turkey have agreed to take additional steps towards stabilization of the situation in Syria’s Idlib, President Vladimir Putin said after the Russia-Iran-Turkey summit in Sochi.
He said that at the three-way talks, they had discussed ways to implement the Russian-Turkish memorandum on a de-escalation zone in Idlib.
“Let me note that the Iranian and Turkish colleagues are ready to work as a team with an aim of finally defusing tensions and stabilizing Idlib. We have agreed to take additional steps in this respect,” Putin said.
The efforts of Moscow, Ankara and Tehran have resulted in a ceasefire that is being respected almost throughout Syria, the Russian leader said.
“These meetings have facilitated progress in improving the situation in Syria. A ceasefire is in place almost throughout the entire country, which means that the level of violence has declined. It is a specific joint measure and undoubtedly a positive result,” Putin said.
According to him, the Astana platform “has laid grounds for a sustainable and viable process aimed at finding a political and diplomatic solution to the Syrian crisis based on the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2254.”
Putin thanked his Iranian and Turkish counterparts – Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan – for participating in the Sochi summit. “I am confident that today’s talks will prove to be fruitful and the agreements we will achieve will contribute to the efforts to bring peace and security back to Syria and ensure stability in the Middle East,” the Russian president said.
This is the fourth summit of the guarantor countries of the Astana process on Syria. The first meeting of the Astana trio was held in Sochi on November 22, 2017. The second summit took place in the Turkish capital of Ankara on April 4, 2018. The three leaders adopted a joint statement following the meeting, expressing determination to continue their cooperation. The third Russian-Turkish-Iranian summit on resolving the Syria issue was held in Tehran on September 7, 2018.
The Russian delegation to the talks consists of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavorv, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, Presidential Aide Yuri Ushakov, Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Vershinin and Special Presidential Envoy for Syria Alexander Lavrentyev. The Turkish delegation particularly involves Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Finance Minister Berat Albayrak, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar and National Intelligence Organization chief Hakan Fidan. Among members of the Iranian delegation are Chief of Staff for the Iranian Armed Forces Mohammad Bagheri, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, the president’s Chief of Staff Mahmoud Vaezi and Energy Minister Reza Ardakanian.
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