Turkey hopes Syria ceasefire will be permanent

September 13, 2016 5:28 pm
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President Recep Tayyip Erdogan suggested that if everything went well in the first 48 hours, there would be a chance to sustain the truce/AFP-File

, ISTANBUL, Turkey, Sep 13 – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday said a fragile ceasefire in neighbouring Syria was largely holding and expressed hopes that it would become permanent.

The truce brokered by Russia and the United States aimed at bringing an end to fighting between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces and a wide range of rebels appeared to be holding on its first full day Tuesday.

Overview
  • The initial 48-hour truce entered into force at sundown Monday across Syria, except in areas held by jihadists like the Islamic State group.
  • Syria's armed forces announced a seven-day "freeze" on military operations, lasting to midnight on Sunday.

In televised comments in Istanbul, Erdogan said there were problems in two or three villages, and suggested that if everything went well in the first 48 hours, there would be a chance to sustain the truce.

“I hope that the ceasefire will be permanent,” he added.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu hoped all sides would do their share for the ceasefire to be lasting.

“God willing, it will not be one-sided,” he said, quoted by CNN-Turk television.

The initial 48-hour truce entered into force at sundown Monday across Syria, except in areas held by jihadists like the Islamic State group.

Syria’s armed forces announced a seven-day “freeze” on military operations, lasting to midnight on Sunday.

The agreement has been billed as the best chance yet to halt the bloodshed in Syria’s five-year civil war.

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