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Damascus supports Russia’s push for de-escalation zones in Syria

May 04, 2017, 9:13 UTC+3
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BEIRUT, May 3. /TASS/. Syria’s government supports Russia’s proposal to establish de-escalation zones in Syria, SANA news agency said on Wednesday citing a statement by a Foreign Ministry spokesperson.

In addition, the statement confirms Damascus’s commitment to the cessation of hostilities agreement of December 30, 2016, brokered by Russia, Iran and Turkey. Syria will not shell the areas designated as ‘safe zones.’

"In this regard, Syria affirms the continuation of the Syrian Arab army, the allied and backup forces in their war against terrorism and the fight against ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra and other affiliated terrorist organizations wherever they were all over the Syrian territories," the news agency said.

Russian proposals have not been published as of yet. Al-Jazeera TV channel said that four ‘safe zones’ or ‘de-escalation zones’ will be established between Idlib and Aleppo, near Hama and Homs and east of Damascus and on the outskirts of Daraa in south Syria.

In the past two months, government forces and armed opposition groups have been engaged in fighting in those areas, the main theaters of combat operations.

The nationwide ceasefire came into force on 30 December 2016 in line with the truce deal sealed in an effort to find a complex solution to the Syria crisis. Syrian government forces and groups of armed opposition with an overall strength of more than 60,000 have agreed to the ceasefire. Russia and Turkey act as its guarantors. Ceasefire does not cover terrorist groups, such as Islamic State.

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