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Putin briefs Merkel, Hollande on steps to implement Syrian ceasefire

January 18, 20:39 UTC+3

Vladimir Putin told both leaders about "preparations for a conference between the Syrian government and the opposition in Astana on January 23

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© Timur Abdullatv/News team/TASS

MOSCOW, January 18. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has had a telephone conversation with German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande on steps towards implementing the Russian-Turkish-Iranian accords on ceasefire in Syria.

According to a report by the Kremlin press service, Putin also told both leaders about "preparations for a conference between the Syrian government and the opposition in Astana on January 23."

Announcement on the forthcoming talks between the Syrian government and the opposition was made after a meeting of Russian, Turkish and Iranian foreign ministers in Moscow on December 20, 2016. They gave support to the efforts to establish peace across the entire Syrian territory.

Muhammed Alloush, the head of the political wing of Jaysh al-Islam grouping, which is one of the seven Islamist groups making up the Islamic Front coalition, will lead the oppositionist delegation. The Islamic Front cooperates with the so-called Syrian Free Army.

Al-Watan newspaper said the Syrian ambassador to the UN, Bashar Ja’afari will head the Syrian government delegation.

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