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Ceasefire in Syria comes into force at midnight December 30

December 29, 2016, 14:49 UTC+3

The most influential commanders of the armed opposition groups have been taking part in the talks, according to the Russian defense minister

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© EPA/STR

MOSCOW, December 29. /TASS/. Russia’s Defense Ministry has prepared a hotline for interaction with Turkey, which acts together with Russia as a guarantor of the general ceasefire in Syria, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday.

"The Defense Ministry has prepared a hotline for maintaining interaction with the Turkish side, which is acting together with Russia as a guarantor of the ceasefire and the observance of the accords achieved," the defense minister said.

The Russian Defense Ministry has established a direct communications channel with Turkish colleagues, Shoigu said.

According to the Russian defense minister, all the pre-requisites have been created for the cessation of combat operations in Syria and for a direct dialog between the Syrian government and the opposition interested in preserving the country’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

"Conditions have been created for reducing the grouping of the Russian forces on the territory of Syria," the defense minister said.

The ceasefire regime in Syria will come into effect at midnight on December 30.

The deal's details 

The militant groups joining the ceasefire agreement in Syria consist of over 60,000 insurgents, Shoigu said:

"In accordance with your order, the defense ministry has been holding talks though Turkey with the Syrian opposition leaders. These armed groups control most of central and northern Syria, the total number of their members exceeds 60,000".

"The most influential commanders of the armed opposition groups have been taking part in the talks," he added.

The defense minister also said that favorable conditions for dialogue between the Syrian government and the opposition, interested in preserving the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, have been created.

"Organizations that refuse to cease hostilities, will from now on be considered as terrorist groups. Action will be taken against them across Syria, as well as against IS and Jabhat al-Nusra [both terror groups outlawed in Russia]," the defense minister stated.

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