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Russia attempts mediation as Syrian and Turkish forces clash

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MOSCOW – Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with President of the Republic of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan upon the initiative of the latter.

Discussions continued on various aspects of the settlement of the Syrian crisis, primarily in the context of the aggravation of the situation in the Idlib de-escalation zone, the Kremlin’s press service reports.

The importance of the full implementation of the existing Russian-Turkish agreements, including the Sochi Memorandum of September 17, 2018, was noted. For these purposes, it was agreed to conduct additional contacts through the relevant departments.

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The Russian delegation, who came to Ankara to discuss the cessation of the offensive of the Syrian government forces in Idlib province, at the request of Turkish partners, left Turkey without reaching an agreement.

Representatives of Russia arrived in Ankara on Saturday, February 8, a few days after eight Turkish troops died as a result of shelling by the Syrian government forces. On Monday, when representatives of Turkey and Russia were negotiating in Ankara, a second incident occurred in Idlib, which killed another five Turkish soldiers.

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