Russia has reaffirmed its leading role in peace efforts for Syria, with the establishment of a conflict resolution center in the in the Arab country’s Jmeimín Air Base, just 24 hours after signing an agreement with the United States.
Russian Defense Ministry spokesman, Mayor General Ígor Konashenkov, said that the center’s primary functions are to facilitate reconciliation talks between Syrian authorities and the opposition - except for the Islamic State, the Al-Nusra Front and other terrorist groups- as well as to reach ceasefire agreements and organize delivery of humanitarian aid.
He added that representatives of the groups that agreed to put en end to hostilities and open peace talks can make phone calls to Jmeimín all day round (one number only) and get help to arrange contacts with Syrian authorities.
The Defense Ministry’s press service also announced that a representative from the U.S. military attaché’s office in Moscow had been invited that same day to the ministry’s headquarters to be given informed about the provision of an emergency line of communication on the topic to them.
This was one of the points agreed on February 22 by the Presidents of Russia, Vladímir Putin, and the United States, Barack Obama, in a telephone conversation, the Russian president said.
In a television address, Putin said it is important that Moscow and Washington -- as co-chairs of the International Support Group for Syria -- be ready to launch an effective mechanism for supervising the ceasefire on behalf of both the Syrian government and armed opposition groups.
Emergency numbers are available tohelp attain that goal and, if necessary, a team would be created to exchange information, he added.
The agreement signed by Moscow and Washington establishes that a ceasefire in Syria will take effect on February 27 at 00:00 local time.
All the parties to the conflict that accept the agreement may take part in the truce, except for the terror groups Islamic State and the Al-Nusra Front.
Moscow and Washington should identify the regions occupied by terrorists and create a direct line of communication and possibly a task force to exchange relevant information on Syria.
The two parties also agreed to fully implement Resolution 2254 of the UN Security Council on the negotiated normalization of the crisis in Syria, a stance that is also shared by Moscow, as it defends the leading role of that international organization in settling the conflict.
Meanwhile, the Syrian government issued a declaration saying that the Syrian authorities will accept the ceasefire agreed by Moscow and Washington if the anti-terror war continues.
Putin said in a special television address that the agreement represents a tangible opportunity to stop the bloody conflict, that according to the U.N., has left 250,000 people dead and nearly 12 million others displaced since it commenced in March 2011.Share on FB Share on TT