US, Russia reach deal on ceasefire in Syria beginning from Feb 27 | world | Hindustan Times
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US, Russia reach deal on ceasefire in Syria beginning from Feb 27

The officials said the new timeline for the hoped-for breakthrough comes after the two former Cold War foes, which are backing opposing sides in Syria’s civil war, agreed on terms for the “cessation of hostilities” between Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government and armed opposition groups. Those sides must accept the deal by Friday.

world Updated: Feb 23, 2016 01:57 IST
A rebel fighter inspects a piece of a rocket that landed in an area that connects the northern countryside of Deraa and Quneitra in Syria.
A rebel fighter inspects a piece of a rocket that landed in an area that connects the northern countryside of Deraa and Quneitra in Syria.(REUTERS)

The United States and Russia agreed on Monday on a new ceasefire for Syria that will take effect on Saturday, US officials said, even as major questions over enforcing and responding to violations of the truce were left unresolved. Where in Syria the fighting must stop and where counterterrorism operations can continue also must be addressed.

The officials said the new timeline for the hoped-for breakthrough comes after the two former Cold War foes, which are backing opposing sides in Syria’s civil war, agreed on terms for the “cessation of hostilities” between Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government and armed opposition groups. Those sides must accept the deal by Friday.

The truce will not cover the Islamic State, the al Qaeda-linked Nusra Front and any other militias designated as terrorist organisations by the UN Security Council.

Both the US and Russia are still targeting those groups with airstrikes. An announcement was expected after presidents Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin speak by telephone on Monday, according to the officials, who weren’t authorized to speak publicly on the matter ahead of time and demanded anonymity.

The war has killed more than 250,000 people, created Europe’s worst refugee crisis since World War II and allowed the Islamic State to carve out territory across Syria and neighbouring Iraq.