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Russia: Syria deal bans US-led coalition aircraft

Russia: Syria deal bans US-led coalition aircraft”

The two-day peace talks that brought the representatives of the Syrian government of President Bashar Assad and the Syrian opposition to the negotiation table were also attended by USA and Jordanian observers.

"We refuse for it (Iran) to play any role as guarantor, considering it's a nation with hostilities against the Syrian people", said Osama Abu Zaid, a Syrian opposition delegation member.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is encouraged by a pact reached on Thursday by Russia, Iran and Turkey to create safe zones in Syria, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a statement, Sputnik reported.

Their chief gripe was the involvement of Iran, a country which has poured tens thousands of troops and fighters into Syria to fight rebel forces.

The comment led to Raheem walking out of the conference along with a number of other opposition figures. "As for the agreements, we are not a party to that agreement and of course we will never be in favour (of it) as long as Iran is called a guarantor state", Abu Zaid said.

In addition to on Thursday's agreement, de Mistura said that the three guarantor countries, plus Jordan and USA, have been discussing humanitarian demining in Syria and the issue of detainees, missing people and abductees.

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"The problem with safe zones is that it provides the terrorists a location where they can retreat, they can re-arm, they can retrain and then they can attack again", the senator said on Thursday night.

Russia's envoy Alexander Lavrentiev said the zones would remain for six months, but their presence could be extended.

Similarly, the United Nations also said the deal provides an opportunity for peace to return to large parts of Syria.

"The Secretary-General welcomes the commitments to ceasing the use of all weapons, particularly aerial assets; to rapid, safe, and unhindered humanitarian access; and to creating conditions for the delivery of medical aid and meeting civilians' basic needs", the statement said.

Turkey's Foreign Ministry said the agreement to create safe zones will cover all of Idlib province, as well as parts of Aleppo, Latakia and Homs.

Meeting in the Russian resort town of Sochi on Wednesday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Vladimir Putin expressed hope the Syrian government and rebels would adopt this latest proposal to "de-escalate" the conflict.

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Preparatory talks would be held in Ankara at the level of experts two weeks ahead of the fifth round of the Astana talks with an aim to delineate the borders of the de-escalation zones and to discuss the memorandum's technical issues.

Lavrentyev, whose remarks were carried by Russian news agencies, said "the operation of aviation in the de-escalation zones, especially of the forces of the global coalition, is absolutely not envisaged, either with notification or without".

Assad has insisted throughout the conflict that he would only accept a regime victory to end the war, while the opposition have demanded that the president should depart from power before peace comes.

Lavrentyev, whose remarks were carried by Russian news agencies, said US -led coalition aircraft would be able to operate against the Islamic State group in specific areas, but the "de-escalation zones" were now closed to their flights.

Syria has been embroiled in fighting since 2011 when anti-government protests were brutally put down by regime forces sparking a larger armed uprising.

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