Turkey and Russia agree on borders of the demilitarised zone around Syria's Idlib, Turkey’s National Defence Ministry said on Friday. Part of the deal aims to prevent a military assault on the last opposition and rebel-held enclave.

Syrians wave opposition and Turkish flags during a demonstration against the Syrian regime in the opposition and rebel-held town of Hazzanu, about 20 kilometres northwest of the city of Idlib, on September 21, 2018.
Syrians wave opposition and Turkish flags during a demonstration against the Syrian regime in the opposition and rebel-held town of Hazzanu, about 20 kilometres northwest of the city of Idlib, on September 21, 2018. (AFP)

The borders of a disarmament zone in a key Syrian province were set during a three-day meeting this week with a Russian delegation, Turkey’s National Defence Ministry said on Friday.

“Taking the geographical structure and characteristics of settled areas into consideration, the borders of the disarmament zone in Idlib have been set,” the ministry said in a statement.

The Turkish-Russian meeting held from September 19 to September 21 discussed carrying out principles of the landmark Sochi agreement for the northwestern province of Idlib, the ministry said.

The agreement, following a meeting in Sochi between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, stipulated the establishment of a 15 to 20-kilometre disarmament zone in Idlib, Syria’s last opposition stronghold.



Ankara and Moscow also signed a memorandum of understanding calling for the “stabilisation” of Idlib's de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited.



Under the pact, opposition groups in Idlib will remain in areas where they are already present, while Russia and Turkey will do joint patrols in the area to head off renewed fighting.

TRT World's Sara Firth has more on the mood in Idlib. 

Syria on the cards in New York

A trilateral meeting on Syria will be held in New York with the foreign ministers of Turkey, Russia, and Iran, Turkey's foreign minister said on Friday.

In the wake of the Sochi agreement, the "ceasefire must be fully established and focus should be on political solution," Cavusoglu said.

Source: AA