Syria: Russia and Turkey agree ceasefire in Idlib province
Russia and Turkey have said they have agreed to a ceasefire in Syria’s Idlib province after clashes left scores of Turkish and Syrian soldiers dead in a dangerous escalation of violence.
Speaking at the Kremlin, Russia’s Vladimir Putin and Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced that the ceasefire would begin at midnight on Thursday evening and that they hoped it would defuse tensions in the region.
The three-point agreement, read out by the two countries’ foreign ministers, also stipulated the creation of a seven-mile (12km) “safety corridor” along the country’s crucial M4 highway, which Russian and Turkish forces would begin patrolling at the end of next week.
The agreement would effectively preserve some of the territorial gains made by Russian-backed Syrian forces during a three-month offensive in Idlib, the country’s last remaining rebel stronghold, while preserving a Turkish foothold in the region.