Middle EastWar

Syria: Ceasefire established in Idlib province following Turkish delegation visit to Russia

Syria's government is determined to retake the final rebel-held province

Russia’s military declared a ceasefire between Syria’s warring sides in Idlib province on Thursday, January 9, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.

“In accordance with the agreements with the Turkish side, the ceasefire was imposed in the Idlib de-escalation zone from 14:00 [Moscow time] on January 9, 2010,” TASS quoted Major General Yuri Borenkov, head of the Russian Center for Reconciliation of the Opposing Parties in Syria, as saying.

However Turkey’s defense ministry on Friday issued a statement saying that the ceasefire would actually take effect as of 00:01 on Saturday, January 12.

A Turkish delegation that visited Moscow last month requested a ceasefire in the province, although previous agreements have failed to hold.

Turkey’s military maintains a number of military outposts in Idlib in support of rebels there.

The Syrian government, backed by Russia and Iran, declared an offensive in Idlib in April 2019.

Though estimates vary, the offensive is believed to have displaced as many as a hundred thousand Syrians away from frontline towns. Turkey’s ruling AKP party has said the country cannot accept more refugees from the war.

This story was updated at 15:30 GMT to include the Turkish Defense Ministry announcement

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