Truce begins in Syria
Today at midnight Damascus time (01:00 MSK) a truce between government forces and armed opposition formations came into force in Syria. An hour before that, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution in support of the cessation of hostilities in Syria. The document, prepared by Russia and the United States, received support from all 15 Security Council member states. According to the adopted resolution, Syrian government forces and opposition groups have informed Moscow and Washington about the fact that they accept the conditions of cessation of hostilities. In turn, members of the Security Council demand that the parties are fulfilling their obligations, and hostilities have stopped "at midnight on February 27th 2016."
The Security Council reaffirmed its complete commitment to the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Syria, and asked UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and his special envoy Staffan de Mistura to resume negotiations between the Syrian government and opposition as soon as possible.
It is planned to resume negotiations on conflict settlement in the country on Monday, March 7th. Staffan de Mistura informed about this at a meeting of the UN Security Council "Assuming that the ceasefire regime is generally adhered to, with God's help, and if humanitarian aid continues to arrive, I intend once again to gather inter-Syrian talks on Monday, March 7th, based on consultations with the Secretary General and your approval," TASS quoted him as saying.
In anticipation of a ceasefire regime coming into force, the Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed that there are no talks about any termination of the fight against terrorism. "We remind you that we are talking about a truce between Damascus and opposition groups that must ... in the remaing time, 'register' in the relevant centers and stations – Russian and American – to declare their intention to participate in the truce. Those groups that do not declare such an intention, correspondingly will not be subject to the truce," the official spokesperson of the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova stated on Thursday.
The same position was designated by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who stated yesterday that the fight against Daesh and other terrorist groups should be continued. "But I want to emphasize once again, groups like Daesh, 'Jabhat al-Nusra' and other terrorist organizations recognized as such by the UN Security Council, are not affected by it. A determined fight against them will definitely continue," the head of state noted, expressing hope that Washington's position is also based on this principle.
At the same time, he assured that military operations against those military units, which have declared their readiness to cease fire, will not be carried out by the armed forces of Syria, Russia and the US-led coalition