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Russian and U.S. military effectively cooperate on Syrian ceasefire — diplomat

February 28, 8:58 updated at: February 28, 9:52 UTC+3 GENEVA
"All the members of this structure have voiced satisfaction with the fact that the ceasefire regime has been observed on the whole," the Russian diplomat stressed
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Alexey Borodavkin

Alexey Borodavkin

© TASS/Boris Kavashkin

GENEVA, February 28 /TASS/. Russian and American military effectively cooperate in ensuring ceasefire in Syria, H.E. Ambassador Alexey Borodavkin, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations Office and other International Organizations in Geneva, told TASS on Sunday.

"We can be satisfied that fruitful and effective cooperation has been established between Russian and American military who are tracking the situation on the ground and are taking necessary measures to support the cessation of hostilities," the Russian diplomat said summing up the results of an informal meeting of a working group for monitoring the cessation of hostilities in Syria held in Geneva on Saturday.

The International Syria Support Group, Russia and the United States have announced the opening of operational centers in Moscow, Washington, Geneva, Latakia (Syria) and Amman (Jordan).

"The Russian military and diplomats remain constantly in touch with United Nations officials, American representatives and other members of the International Syria Support Group," Borodavkin said at the Geneva-based operational center.

"All the members of this structure have voiced satisfaction with the fact that the ceasefire regime has been observed on the whole," the Russian diplomat stressed.

"The first day of cessation of hostilities has ended without any major incidents. On the whole, the ceasefire regime is being observed. Minor violations that took place have not caused any huge casualties," Borodavkin went on to say.

He called attention to the fact that terrorists from the Islamic State terrorist group, which is banned in Russia, attacked a Syrian army checkpoint at the entrance to the city of Al-Salamiyah in the central Homs province. "It indicates once again that it is necessary to join efforts to fight terrorists in Syria," the Russian diplomat went on to say.

Borodavkin said that first day of ceasefire made the prospect of renewing the Syria peace talks in Geneva real.

Last Friday, U.N. Special Envoy on Syria Staffan de Mistura said he was planning to gather the parties in the Syrian conflict anew in Geneva on March 7.

"A ceasefire which is taking place in Syria assures us that political talks for peaceful settlement of the Syrian conflict may resume," Borodavkin said.

He added that the ceasefire was also ensuring effective delivery of relief aid to the Syrian population and helped uniting all healthy political forces in Syria for fighting the Daesh (the Arab name for IS), Jabhat al-Nusra Front and other organizations, which the United Nations has classified as terrorist.

The cessation of hostilities between the government troops and armed opposition units in Syria took effect at 00:00 Damascus time (01:00 Moscow time) on February 27. The U.N. Security Council had passed a resolution supporting the clashes’ cessation an hour before the ceasefire came into effect. All the 15 members of the U.N. Security Council voted for the document prepared by Russia and the United States. U.N. Special Envoy on Syria Staffan de Mistura told a briefing at the Geneva Palace of Nations that 97armed groups in Syria had agreed to observe the ceasefire.

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