Russia looks to further strengthen cease-fire in Syria

UN special envoy for Syria meets Russian defense and foreign ministers

Russia looks to further strengthen cease-fire in Syria

World Bulletin / News Desk

Russian defense minister called for strengthening the cease-fire in Syria’s de-escalation zones further during his meeting with UN special envoy in Moscow on Thursday.

Sergey Shoigu acknowledged that there had been some cease-fire violations from both the opposition and regime forces, but he sounded some optimistic notes, saying they had not been "catastrophic" and "do not require a serious response from the forces that are engaged in monitoring and observing” the cease-fire regime.

The minister said he would like to discuss a number of issues on further steps to strengthen the cease-fire regime in the areas of de-escalation, according to a statement released on the Russian Defense Ministry’s website.

UN Envoy Staffan de Mistura said violence in de-escalation zones in Syria had decreased "significantly" over the past month.

De Mistura said they both agreed on carrying out demining activities and humanitarian assistance in the de-escalation zones, the statement added.

About the postponement of peace talks over Syria, the envoy said: "Of course, we hope that the process of the talks in Astana will continue. I know that the next meeting in Astana was postponed, but I hope it will take place and this process will continue.”

The fifth round of Syria peace talks was supposed to start in the Kazah capital Astana on Monday, but it was postponed; Kazakh Foreign Ministry on Thursday neither gave any reason for the postponement of the two-day talks nor specified when it would be held in the future.

During the previous meeting in Astana on May 4, the guarantor countries -- Russia, Turkey, and Iran -- had signed a deal to establish de-escalation zones in Syria.

The UN special envoy for Syria also met Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

"I think the main goal is to make sure that all efforts by everyone involved, both inside and outside Syria, are well-orchestrated and aimed at ensuring the sovereignty of the Syrian state," Lavrov said, according Russian Foreign Ministry's statement.

Lavrov said Geneva and Astana processes "supplement" each other.

Peace talks were launched in Geneva in 2012 aimed at finding a political solution to the Syrian conflict.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 09 Haziran 2017, 01:11