Russia and turkey began joint patrols along a key rapid transit route in syria’s last rough rebel-held area around the city of idlib on sunday.
But the first trip was "provoked" by rebels backed by turkey, the russian defense ministry said in moscow. According to activists, local militia threatened the soldiers and residents blocked the road with tires.
The rebels had tried to use civilians – including women and children – as "living shields," it was claimed. Therefore, the route of the first patrol had been shortened. Turkey is now being given additional time to ensure the safety of joint patrols. The turkish defense ministry only announced that the first joint patrol on the M4 rapid transit route had taken place.
The syrian observatory for human rights reported that civilians were putting tires on the road and thus obstructing the patrols. Residents had protested against russia supporting syrian government of president baschar al-assad.
Russia and turkey had agreed more than a week ago on a ceasefire and checkpoints in idlib. The first armored vehicles left near the settlement of trumba, about two kilometers west of the strategically important town of sarakib, according to russian agencies.
The agreement between russia and turkey also provides for a "security corridor" along the M4 highway that runs through the rebel-held area. The protection forces also want to create a "joint coordination center" to monitor the ceasefire.
The ceasefire also agreed for the contested region has since largely held. Russia supports government in syrian civil war, turkey sides with rebels. Sunday also marks the ninth anniversary of the outbreak of the conflict.
On 15. March 2011 people first took to the streets in the capital damascus to protest against assad’s rule. The region around idlib in northwestern syria is now the last rough area where islamist rebels dominate. Kurds also control syrian territory in the east.
To the 9. On the 50th anniversary of the start of the conflict, germany, france, the u.S. And the u.K. Demanded that the syrian government end the fighting in idlib and call for a nationwide ceasefire. "We demand that the assad regime stop the ruthless killing," a joint declaration read on sunday. The "unconscionable military offensive" in idlib is causing further suffering and leading to an "unprecedented humanitarian crisis".