Turkish MoD reaffirms commitment to Sochi deal on Syria’s Idlib

ANKARA, Turkey’s National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar reiterated on Monday that his country fulfils the commitments it made in the agreement on a demilitarized zone in Idlib governorate, north Syria.

The deal was signed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi on last September 17.

The implementation of the deal “continues as planned. Turkey stands by its commitments,” Turkey’s AA quoted him as saying at a press conference. The deal provides that Syrian opposition groups in Idlib will remain in areas in which they are already present, while Russia and Turkey will conduct joint patrols in the area with a view to preventing any renewal of fighting.

Turkish and Russian military forces, meanwhile, will conduct joint patrols along the zone’s perimeter.

On the Turkish-US joint patrols in Manbij, north Syria, he said that joint training of the Turkish and US soldiers on the combined patrols will be completed in a short time.

Joint patrols will begin soon afterwards under the Manbij Roadmap and Security Principles, he affirmed. The Manbij deal between Turkey and the US focuses on the withdrawal of YPG/PKK terrorists from the city to stabilize the region, which is in the northeast of the Aleppo province in northern Syria.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US and the EU – has been responsible for the death of some 40,000 people, including those of women and children; the YPG is its Syrian branch.

Source: Kuwait News Agency