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Jordan not part of Syria deescalation deal — official

By Mohammad Ghazal - May 06,2017 - Last updated at May 06,2017

AMMAN — Jordan is not part of the agreement signed in the Kazakh capital Astana to create deescalation zones in Syria, a top government official said on Saturday.

“Jordan is not part of the agreement, but it supports all efforts to attain a political solution in Syria,” the official, who preferred to remain anonymous, told The Jordan Times on Saturday.

On Thursday, Russia, Iran and Turkey signed an agreement to create deescalation zones in Syria with a view to ending the fighting in Syria. The three countries signed the agreement in the presence of UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, observers from the US and Jordan, a delegation of the Syrian government and members of the armed opposition.

“Our main concern is to protect our borders and interests,” the official said.

The official stressed that ending the fighting and escalations in Syria is a strategic interest for Jordan.

“Jordan is taking part in the Astana talks as an observer and the deal was between three countries; Russia, Iran and Turkey,” the official added.

The zones, which aim to reduce tensions, will be set up in four areas, namely in Idlib province and neighbouring areas — Latakia, Hama and Aleppo —  to the north of Homs, East Ghouta and some provinces in southern Syria — Daraa and Quneitra — Russian News Agency TASS reported.

Security areas will be established on the borders of deescalation zones, where checkpoints are due to be set up to facilitate the passage of civilians and the delivery of humanitarian assistance. Points to monitor the ceasefire will be also be arranged there, it indicated.

The Russian president’s special envoy for Syria, Alexander Lavrentiev, said Moscow is ready to send observers to Syria to monitor the ceasefire in deescalation zones. 

He said states that are not parties to the memorandum on deescalation zones could also take part in the monitoring. This decision must be taken unanimously by the countries — guarantors of the ceasefire — Turkey, Russia and Iran, the diplomat said, according to TASS.

The memorandum on establishing deescalation zones in Syria envisages a ceasefire in the designated areas from May 6. 

Any military activity, including flights of aircraft, will be banned. Russia, Iran and Turkey will do their utmost to combat terrorism in these territories and outside them, according to the news agency.


Ten days after signing the memorandum, the guarantor states will establish a joint working group, in particular for designating the borders of deescalation zones, according to TASS. 

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