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Ankara, Moscow agree to prevent clashes between Syrian army, opposition units

March 02, 14:19 UTC+3

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu noted that Ankara had been maintaining contacts with Russia and the US over the situation in Syria

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© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

ANKARA, March 2. /TASS/. Turkey and Russia have agreed to prevent clashes between the armed groups of the moderate Syrian opposition and the government troops near the city of al-Bab, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters on Thursday.

"We have agreed with Russia to prevent clashes between the armed groups of the moderate Syrian opposition and the government troops, particularly near the city of al-Bab. A boundary has been drawn. The government forces will not cross it while advancing to the north and the opposition units will refrain from crossing the boundary if they move south," he said.

Ankara in close contact with Russia, US over Syria

Ankara has been maintaining contacts with Russia and the US over the situation in Syria, involving foreign ministries, military and technical experts, Cavusoglu said.

"We have been conducting consultations with Russia and the United States, on all levels. We make phone calls when the need arises. We continue technical negotiations, particularly on the Raqqa operation. We maintain contacts with Russians over the Syrian issue," he said.

The Turkish top diplomat went on to say that on March 10, in Moscow, a meeting of the Turkish-Russian High-Level Cooperation Council will be held. "This year Moscow will host the Council’s meeting. We have been making preparations, defense ministries have been keeping contact. Me and (Russian Foreign Minister Sergey) Lavrov have been coordinating the (preparatory) process," Cavusoglu added.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will take part in the High-Level Cooperation Council’s meeting. He said earlier that while in Moscow, he planned to discuss bilateral cooperation in the fight against the Islamic State terror group (or IS, outlawed in Russia) in Syria.

"We can continue the struggle against the IS together with Russia if we receive a relevant request. In March I will visit Moscow, we will have an opportunity to thoroughly discuss these issues," he said.

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