February 11, 2019 / 2:10 PM / 6 days ago

Russia, Turkey agree on need for decisive measures in Syria's Idlib - RIA

MOSCOW, Feb 11 (Reuters) - Russia and Turkey’s defence ministers agreed on the need to take what they called decisive measures to stabilise the situation in Syria’s Idlib province during talks on Monday, Russia’s RIA news agency cited a joint statement as saying.

Russia, an important Syrian government ally, and Turkey brokered a deal in September to create a demilitarised zone in the northwest Idlib region that would be evacuated of all heavy weapons and jihadist fighters.

However, the area has been the site of continued hostilities with Russia saying that militants who used to belong to the Nusra Front group are in control of large swaths of territory.

A joint statement published after the talks between the two defence ministers in Ankara spoke of “the need in particular to take decisive measures to ensure security in the Idlib demilitarised zone,” RIA reported. (Reporting by Polina Devitt; writing by Tom Balmforth; editing by Andrew Osborn)

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