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Jordan’s participation in Astana meetings will consolidate Syria ceasefire — expert

February 07, 17:29 UTC+3 BEIRUT

Jordan will become the guarantor of security on the southern border and this will put an end to the penetration of armed gangs through it, an Arab expert Nidal Sabi said

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© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

BEIRUT, February 7. /TASS/. Jordan’s decision to join the Syria ceasefire monitoring group set up in Kazakhstan’s Astana will contribute to ending the crisis, an Arab expert Nidal Sabi told TASS on Tuesday.

"Jordan’s participation in the work of a joint operative group will allow expanding the ceasefire on the frontline to the south of Damascus," Sabi said. "Like Turkey in northern Syria, Jordan will become the guarantor of security on the southern border and this will put an end to the penetration of armed gangs through it."

Besides, Jordan is also mobilizing moderate armed opposition towards forcing terrorists of the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra groups (outlawed in Russia) out of the provinces of Daraa and Quneitra, the expert said.

"It is very important that after Jordan the work of the joint operative group is joined by the representatives of Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the major sponsors of the armed opposition," he stressed.

The first session of a joint task force on monitoring ceasefire in Syria, comprising representatives of Russia, Turkey, Iran, and also the United Nations and Jordan, was held in Kazakhstan’s Astana on February 6. The task force was set up after the January 23-24 conference on the Syrian settlement in Astana.

Jordan’s representatives said in Astana that opposition groups in Syria’s southern provinces are ready to join cessation of hostilities and conduct combat actions against the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra.

Since 2013, Sabi has been an active participant of the Syrian peace initiative on establishing dialogue between the government and the opposition. He said progress reached in Astana creates necessary conditions now for a successful intra-Syrian dialogue in Geneva due on February 20 under the auspices of UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura.

"The Astana meeting was the first conference over the past six years that brought practical results," Sabi said. "All the sides should think about the importance of continuing the work in this direction of settling the Syrian crisis."

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