Turkish, Russian delegations to meet on Syria, Libya in Moscow


Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Önal, accompanied by an interagency delegation, will spend Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 in Moscow to discuss regional developments, in particular Libya and Syria, with Russian counterparts, the Turkish Foreign Ministry announced Monday.

Turkey and Russia, which back opposing sides in the Syrian civil war, agreed on March 5 to halt military activity in northwestern Idlib after an escalation in violence that displaced nearly 1 million people and brought the two sides close to confrontation. The deal addresses Turkey’s main concerns: stopping a flow of refugees and preventing the deaths of more Turkish troops on the ground.

Idlib has long been under siege by the regime’s forces and its allies, and previous cease-fires for the region have been plagued by violations. Since April 2018, attacks on the last opposition stronghold have dramatically intensified and caused new waves of displaced civilians to move toward the Turkish border, putting Turkey, which already hosts more than 3.5 million Syrians, into a difficult position.

Source: Russian Foreign Ministry