Russia Calls on Turkey to Honor its Obligations in Syria’s Idlib: Diplomat
Story Code : 1027615
"By the way, as for the fulfillment of commitments, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, regrettably, says nothing about the implementation of the Turkish side’s obligations concerning Idlib, where units of illegal armed groups, such as Hayat Tahrir al-Sham terrorist organization and the Syrian National Army, have not been withdrawn behind the M44 highway. So, we hope that they will also honor all of their obligations," he added.
Cross-border assistance mechanism
As for a possible extension of the cross-border assistance mechanism in Syria, the Russian side will be guided by Syria’s position on this matter, Lavrentyev noted.
Regrettably, we see that the obligations and guarantees given by Western nations in the context of the implementation of early recovery projects and the expansion of humanitarian aid to Syrian-controlled territories are stalling and are at a low point. And this is why the extension is needed. Our position is well known but we are oriented toward the Syrian side on this matter as well. If it is interested in keeping this mechanism in place in the current difficult environment or in extending it for a certain period, we are ready to heed their opinion. If they think it is no longer welcome, naturally, we will block it," he said.
According to the Russian diplomat, a possible extension of this mechanism is expected to be discussed in December. "We have some time. We have discussed this matter with our Syrian friends and decided to return to it in mid-December. I hope we will visit Damascus to speak about it," he went on to say.
At the same time, he stressed that Russia still thinks that the mechanism has outlived its usefulness and should be rejected. "After all, all assistance should come via legal channels, not via the cross-border mechanism. It should come via the legitimate authorities, via Damascus and then be distributed across the entire Syrian territory. That is why we attached much significance to the so-called cross-line operations, i.e. from the Damascus-controlled territories to territories it doesn’t control, like in Idlib," he stressed.