MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. /TASS/. United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres hails the agreement reached by Russian and Turkish Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on the situation in Syria’s Idlib as its will help improve the humanitarian situation in the region, Spokesperson for the UN Secretary General Stephane Dujarric said in a statement on Tuesday.
"The Secretary-General welcomes the agreement reached on 17 September between President Erdogan of Turkey and President Putin of Russia to create a demilitarized buffer zone in Idlib region, which should avert a full-scale military operation and provide reprieve for millions of civilians," the statement said. "The Secretary-General calls all the parties in Syria to cooperate in the implementation of the agreement and ensure safe and unimpeded humanitarian access in all areas through the most direct routes."
"The Secretary-General stresses the need for swift action to address the root causes of the conflict and forge, at long last, a durable political solution in line with UN Security Council resolution 2254," the statement stressed.
Monday’s talks between the Russian and Turkish Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in Russia’s Sochi yielded and agreement to establish a demilitarized zone in Syria’s Idlib, along the contact line between government troops and the opposition by October 15. At Ankara’s initiative, it is planned to withdraw the opposition’s tanks, multiple missile launcher systems, artillery systems and mortars from this zone by October 10. Control in this zone will be exercised by mobile patrol groups of Turkish troops and unites of Russian military police.
Idlib is the only large region in Syria that is still controlled by illegal armed groups. In 2017, a northern de-escalation zone was established in Idlib to give shelter to militants and their families who are reluctant to voluntarily surrender arms.
According to United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, about 10,000 Jabhat al-Nusra and al-Qaeda (both outlawed in Russia) militants are currently staying in the region. When Damascus finally regains control of the governorate, it will put an end to the large-scale armed confrontation in Syria.