US, Russia, Jordan’s brokered ceasefire in southwestern Syria in effect

Free Syrian Army fighter stand near an anti-air craft machine gun in Quneitra, Syria July 8, 2017. REUTERS/Alaa al-Faqir

A ceasefire brokered by the US, Russia and Jordan went into effect Sunday in southwest Syria, the CNN reported.

The plan was announced Friday at the G20 summit in Hamburg after a meeting between US President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, CNN added.

The international efforts will take place in the province of Deraa and along the Lebanese border. The area in southern Syria will be the first in which the US is party to a de-escalate zone, CNN said.

White House national security adviser H.R. McMaster said in a statement Saturday that such de-escalation zones are a US priority.

“The United States remains committed to defeating ISIS, helping to end the conflict in Syria, reducing suffering, and enabling people to return to their homes,” he said. “This agreement is an important step toward these common goals.”
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who sat in on the discussion between the two leaders, told reporters Friday that the agreement could be a precursor to further cooperation in Syria, according to CNN.

His Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, said the US and Russia had “promised to ensure that all groups there comply with the ceasefire.”

“This is our first indication of the US and Russia being able to work together in Syria,” Lavrov said.

The Russian military police — coordinating with the US and Jordan — will initially ensure security around the de-escalation zone, officials said, the CNN added.

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