U.S.-Russian Ceasefire Takes Effect in Southwest Syria

Peace and Freedom

BEIRUT — A U.S.-Russian brokered ceasefire deal for southwestern Syria took effect at noon (0900 GMT) on Sunday, the latest international attempt at peacemaking in the six-year war.

The United States, Russia and Jordan reached a ceasefire and “de-escalation agreement” this week with the aim of paving the way for a broader, more robust truce.

The announcement came after a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit of major economies in Germany.

Several ceasefires have crumbled since the onset of the conflict and it was not clear how much the combatants – Syrian government forces and the main rebels in the southwest – were committed to this latest effort.

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

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