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Turkish minister urges Russia over Syria peace plan

Moscow must make Syrian regime avoid violating ceasefire, Foreign Minister Cavusoglu says during visit to UN HQ

Canberk Yüksel   | 06.01.2017
Turkish minister urges Russia over Syria peace plan NEW YORK, UNITED STATES - JANUARY 5: Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (L) and Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres (R) pose for a photo during their meeting in New York, USA on January 5, 2017. ( Volkan Furuncu - Anadolu Agency )

New York

NEW YORK

Turkey’s foreign minister has called on Russia to keep the Syrian regime to its pledge of complying with a ceasefire that Moscow and Ankara jointly brokered.

During his New York City visit Thursday to meet newly-appointed United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters he was worried by breaches of the ceasefire, which was endorsed over the weekend by the UN Security Council (UNSC).

“They need to stop the regime and affiliated groups,” Cavusoglu said. “Everybody must keep their word, and show that they stand by the obligations they undertook,” he added.

The foreign minister said all of the violations were committed by the regime, adding that Ankara was doing its best to keep opposition fighters from retaliating. “However, this will be extremely difficult if the other side keeps doing this. We need to recognize this reality,” he said.

Turkey and Russia are guarantors of a peace plan that involves a ceasefire as well as a return to the political process between the warring sides after nearly six years of fighting.

It also calls a meeting between the parties in Astana, Kazakhstan -- which recently became a UNSC member -- ahead of a revival of the Geneva talks on Feb. 8.

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