Turkey, World

'Turkish army striving for peace in Idlib, Syria'

Results of talks with Russian delegation will be announced soon, says Turkey's national defense minister

Erdoğan Çağatay Zontur   | 27.02.2020
'Turkish army striving for peace in Idlib, Syria' Turkish National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar

ANKARA 

The Turkish Armed Forces is working to forge peace in the embattled Syrian province of Idlib as soon as possible, the national defense minister said Thursday. 

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's "instructions are clear. The Turkish Armed Forces strive for peace in Idlib as soon as possible," Hulusi Akar told journalists in parliament.

Speaking on talks on Idlib with a Russian delegation visiting Ankara, Turkey’s capital, Akar said: "The results will be announced any day now. Accordingly, we will reveal our stance."

Akar also said that he will hold a phone talk with his U.S. counterpart Mark Esper this evening.

Idlib, across Turkey's southern border, falls within a de-escalation zone laid out in a deal between Turkey and Russia in late 2018.

The Syrian regime and its allies, however, have consistently broken the terms of the cease-fire, launching frequent attacks inside the territory where acts of aggression are expressly prohibited.

The de-escalation zone is currently home to four million civilians, including hundreds of thousands displaced in recent years by regime forces throughout the war-torn country.

Turkey has called for an immediate halt to the attacks on Idlib, and for the cease-fire to be followed, urging the international community to take action or Turkey will have to.

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