Turkey, Russia agree on northern Syria terror-free zone

  • 02:02 23 October 2019

Turkey, Russia agree on northern Syria terror-free zone

"We had very productive meetings with our Russian counterparts in Sochi today and reached an excellent agreement," a senior Turkish official speaking on condition of anonymity told Daily Sabah late Tuesday, ONA reports.

"Ankara and Moscow agreed to set up a terror-free safe zone," he added.

In a joint press conference with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan also on Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Moscow understands Turkey's concerns about terrorism on its southern border. "We share those concerns; those separatist movements were recently instigated," Putin said.

"It is important that terrorists do not take advantage of the Turkish military operation Operation Peace Spring in Syria."

Erdoğan began his words by saying that Turkey will continue to work harder to address Russians'' concerns about the situation in northern Syria. "Our Operation Peace Spring is being carried out to eliminate terrorists from the region; we are not eyeing any country's territory," Erdoğan said.

"Turkey and Russia have agreed not to allow any separatist movements in Syria. As of October 23, 12:00 pm, YPG terrorists and their ammunition will be taken out of the terror-free zone and their positions will be dismantled."

"YPG will retreat back 30 kilometers into Syrian territory within 150 hours, then Turkish-Russian joint patrols will be launched in the area at 10 kilometer depth," he said.

"YPG terrorists in Tal Rifaat and Manbij will leave the area," Erdoğan also added referring to the northwestern Syrian towns currently held by YPG terrorists.

Faig Mahmudov