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Lavrov: Russian, Turkish, Iranian Chiefs of General Staff to meet prior to Nov 22 summit

November 19, 15:17 UTC+3

The military of the three countries had been in contact on functioning of all the four de-escalation zones in Syria and continue working on organization of the fifth zone

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ANTALYA /Turkey/, November 19. /TASS/. Chiefs of Staff of Russia, Turkey and Iran at a meeting before the summit on November 22 will have in Sochi a meeting to discuss details of the de-escalation zones in Syria, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said after talks with foreign ministers of Iran and Turkey on Sunday.

"In preparations for the summit on November 22 in Sochi, the three countries’ Chiefs of General Staff will also have a meeting," he said.

According to Lavrov, the military of the three countries had been in contact on functioning of all the four de-escalation zones in Syria, and also continue working on organization of the fifth zone.

Earlier, the Russian president’s envoy on the Middle East and African countries, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said the work on the fifth de-escalation zone continued in contacts with parties to the Astana process and with the U.S., but, he said, it is too early to speak about results.

The three de-escalation zones are in Syria’s southwest, in Eastern Ghouta (Damascus suburbs) and near Homs. The fourth zone covers the Idlib Province and parts of the neighboring Aleppo, Latakia and Hama. Starting from May 6, military activities and aircraft flights in the de-escalation zones were banned. The document’s term is six months, with an optional further extension.

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