Astana Peace Process Has Helped Reduce Violence in Syria: Iran’s FM
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said coordinated efforts by Iran, Russia and Turkey within the framework of the peace process in the Kazak capital of Astana have helped reduce violence and establish a ceasefire in Syria.
The Astana peace process for Syria, which began 11 months ago, has helped reduce the clashes and casualties in the Arab country to a large extent, Zarif said on Sunday ahead of a trilateral meeting of Iran, Russia and Turkey on the situation on Syria.
Foreign ministers of Iran, Turkey and Russia convened on Sunday in the southwestern Turkish city of Antalya to discuss the results of expert-level talk on the settlement of Syria crisis.
The Iranian minister further said that the Astana talks have also given strength to the Syrian government and resistance forces to continue their battle against Daesh (ISIL) and other terrorist groups with more resolve.
He added that the presidents of Iran, Russia and Turkey plan to continue this trend by holding more consultations on the Syrian crisis in an upcoming meeting slated to be held in the Russian resort city of Sochi on November 22.
During the summit, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan are going to push for peace in Syria, which has been gripped by war since March 2011.
Iran, Russia and Turkey have so far held seven rounds of peace talks in Kazakhstan to help end the conflict in Syria. The fourth round of those talks in May produced a memorandum of understanding on de-escalation zones in Syria, sharply reducing fighting in the country.
Diplomatic efforts to end fighting in Syria gained momentum in 2017 with the announcement of a ceasefire in the Arab country in early January.
According to a report by the Syrian Center for Policy Research, the conflict has claimed the lives of over 470,000 people, injured 1.9 million others, and displaced nearly half of the country’s pre-war population of about 23 million within or beyond its borders.