Turkey FM Çavusoglu Confirms Agreement Towards A Ceasefire in Syria

Turkey and Russia are close to brokering a new agreement that would expand a cease-fire between the government and opposition groups to all of Syria, Turkey’s top diplomat has said, underlining that “terror organizations” like Syria’s Democratic Union Party (PYD) will not be allowed to participate in upcoming talks in Astana.

“We are still working on it. It could be put into place at any moment. It’s about expanding the cease-fire. We are also working for a negotiated political solution,” Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told reporters on Dec. 28 on the sidelines of a presidential reception.

A transition towards peace in Syria involving regime leader Bashar al-Assad is “impossible” as the country’s opposition will not accept him, Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Çavusoglu said on Wednesday.

His comments come after Turkish media reported that Ankara and Moscow agreed to a nationwide ceasefire in Syria that would kick off at midnight.

Çavusoglu confirmed that Turkey had prepared an agreement towards a ceasefire but did not go into details.

The ceasefire could bring Bashar al Assad’s regime and Syrian opposition forces closer to ending a five year conflict that has displaced millions and killed over 400,000 people.

“The plan is expected to be carried in all areas where the Assad regime and opposition are fighting,” Anadolu Agency (AA) reported on Wednesday, citing an unnamed official.

The report said terror organisations operating in Syria will be excluded from the deal.

Anadolu Agency reported that if the ceasefire succeeds, political negotiations between Assad and opposition parties are expected to take place in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana. The report did not specify when the talks were likely to take place