Syrian government accepts Russian proposal of creating de-escalated zones

Syrian government accepts Russian proposal of creating de-escalated zones

US President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, discussed a proposal Tuesday for the creation of "safe zones", or "de-escalation zones", in Syria.

Russia's Vladimir Putin is confident "safe zones" in Syria's rebel-held areas would deliver a ceasefire that will hold.

Erdogan claimed that a new conflict-free zone would be established in the Idlib area.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Lavrov expressed hope that the latest round of UN-brokered Syria talks in the Swiss city of Geneva would be held this month.

"We are calling, therefore, for the immediate investigation and for immediate institution of measures to ensure that now no strikes are taking place and are halted", de Mistura said, urging all delegations to "press ahead tomorrow with de-escalation discussions and confidence-building measures".

The Syrian armed opposition returned to the talks on Thursday, the RIA news agency reported. Over the weekend, US troops were again photographed driving through the town of Qamishli, near the site of last week's Turkish airstrikes, which killed 18 USA -backed Kurdish militias.

Representatives of the Syrian opposition walked out of the talks Wednesday over continued Syrian government bombing of hospitals and civilian targets, and the role Iran is playing in the Syrian civil war.

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Candidate Trump had also expressed a desire for a US alliance with Russian Federation to fight Islamist militants, a goal that has been elusive since he took office on January 20.

A video of the aftermath of Wednesday's explosion posted online by the Azaz Media Center shows charred cars and firefighters struggling to put out a blaze.

Speaking to reporters after their talks, Putin and Erdogan said they were still focused on working together to end the conflict in Syria, which has turned the country into a breeding ground for violent Islamist militant groups. Syrian activists say a large explosion in a northern town along the border with Turkey has killed and wounded several people.

A senior Trump administration official said Putin had requested the call and described it as an effort to present his ideas for Syria.

But Putin said on Wednesday that relations have been restored.

Relations between Moscow and Ankara deteriorated after Turkey shot down a Russian warplane at the Syrian border in November 2015 and Russia responded with trade and tourism sanctions.

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