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30 Dec 2016

Russian President Putin announces ceasefire in Syrian War

Ceasefire in Syrian Civil War

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a ceasefire between the Syrian Government and opposition groups starting at midnight on 29 Dec'16.

Russia, Iran, and Turkey were ready to broker a peace deal in the nearly six-year-old Syrian Civil war.

The Syrian Army halted the fighting nationwide and announced that ISIS, al-Nusra Front militants, and all linked groups would be excluded from the deal.

In context

Ceasefire in Syrian Civil War

Russian President Vladimir Putin's statement

"The agreements reached are, of course, fragile, need a special attention and involvement. But after all, this is a notable result of our joint work, efforts by the defense and foreign ministries, our partners in the regions."

Syrian rebel officials agree to the ceasefire deal


Syrian rebel officials agree to the ceasefire deal

Several Syrian rebel officials said they agreed to the ceasefire deal, but there's an uncertainty about which organizations were included in the deal.

Talks on a ceasefire reportedly gained a momentum over the last week after Russia, Turkey and Iran said they were ready to support a deal and also adopted a declaration setting out principles that any agreement should adhere to.

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A number of documents signed

Vladimir Putin stated the Syrian Government and the Syrian opposition groups had signed several numbers of documents including the ceasefire that would take effect at midnight on the night of 29-30 Dec'16. He added Russia had agreed to reduce its military deployment in Syria.

The US

The US sidelined in recent ceasefire negotiations

The US was sidelined in the recent ceasefire negotiations and it wouldn't reportedly attend the next round of peace talks in Kazakhstan's capital, Astana.

The exclusion of the US reflects the growing frustration from Russia and Turkey over the US's Syria policy.

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, however, said the US could join them once President-elect Donald Trump takes office.

The long-running Syrian civil war and its complexity


The long-running Syrian civil war and its complexity

The negotiations towards a ceasefire to end the long-running Syrian civil war and its complexity come with an array of groups and countries involved on all sides.

The deal by Russia and Turkey to act as guarantors in the conflict comes despite their support of different sides.

Turkey insists on the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's departure while Russia backs him.


Rebels discussing the proposed ceasefire with Turkey

The rebels were discussing with Turkey the ceasefire being negotiated with Russia.

They rejected Russia's demand to exclude a rebel stronghold near Damascus from any deal.

Turkey supports Free Syrian Army, a loose rebel group alliance, which backs north Syrian operations to sweep ISIS and Syrian Kurdish fighters from its border.

But the US backs Syrian Kurdish YPG in the anti-ISIS fight, infuriating Turkey.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan accuses US of supporting terrorism

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, accusing the US of supporting terrorism in Syria, including ISIS, stated: "Some countries, namely the United States, have come up with some excuses on their own and overtly supported the organizations (like Kurdish YPG) that massacre innocent people in our region."

Rebels threaten to nullify ceasefire in Syria

02 Jan 2017

Rebels threaten to nullify ceasefire in Syria

Accusing government forces of violating the ceasefire in the country, Syrian rebel forces have threatened to nullify the ceasefire and resume fighting.

Rebels accused government forces and allies of engaging in airstrikes and ground offensives in several areas despite calling for a ceasefire among all sectors in the country.

The ISIS is not included in any of the ceasefire agreements.

08 Jan 2017

Syrian rebel group says no ceasefire reached

Head of a Syrian rebel group denied a report of a ceasefire between rebels and government forces in the Wadi Barada area near Damascus.

He said the government had rejected the ceasefire.

The ceasefire would've provided for repairs in Wadi Barada to the water pumping station and people displaced from 2 nearby villages could have returned.

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