Video: Vladimir Putin on the Ceasefire in Syria: “I Have Just held a Phone Conversation with President Barack Obama”

GR Editor’s Note: This speech by Vladimir Putin was barely covered and commented by the Western mainstream media

Video with English subtitles,

Our thanks to Eurasia Daily for this video:

Translation from Russian by Inessa Sinchougova.

“Dear friends, I have just held a phone conversation with the President of the United States, Barack Obama. The conversation was initiated by Russia, however interest toward dialogue was undoubtedly mutual.

We have agreed on common grounds of understanding for a ceasefire in Syria. Preceding this discussion was the intensive work of Russian and American experts. We were able draw upon previous experience, such as our combined efforts in eradicating chemical weapons from Syria.

Previously, our negotiators held a number of closed consultations. As a result, we were able to reach a concrete decision. We have agreed on ceasefire to take place from midnight of 27th February 2016, Damascus time.

The requirements are as follows. Until midday on the 26th of February 2016, all warring parties in Syria must show either to ourselves or to our American partners their dedication to stopping the war. Russian and American personnel can together pinpoint on a map where exactly such groups are operating.

The Syrian Arab Army, the armed forces of the Russian Federation, as well as the US-led coalition, will not carry out military operations against these opposition groups. In response, oppositioners must cease all military activity against the Syrian Arab Army, and parties supporting them.

As for ISIL, Jabhat al-Nusra, and other terrorist groups (as confirmed by the United Nations Security Council) these parties are excluded from the agreement. Military operations against terrorists will continue.

It is critical that the US and Russia put into practice a mechanism for the realisation of this ceasefire, ensuring that military activity from the Syrian government, as well as its opposition, stops. We will set up a “hotline” and a working group, as required, for the exchange of information between parties. Russia will work closely with Damascus – with the legitimate president of Syria. We consider, that the United States will do the same with the groups that they support.

I am assured that our cooperation with the United States can radically change the critical situation in Syria. Finally, we have a chance to stop this ongoing bloodshed and torture. All routes and avenues for the delivery of humanitarian aid to the people of Syria must be freed up.

Very importantly, we are launching a long-term, political consultation process for pan-Syrian discussions in Geneva, to be overseen by the United Nations. Recent history has shown that one-sided actions, that are carried out without a UN resolution, and geared at short term political benefits, lead to tragic results. These examples are on everybody’s tongues; Somalia, Iraq, Libya, Yemen.

It is with this background that we approach the current situation. Russian-American negotiations and efforts to coordinate between all parties, have the potential to become a leading international precedent. This ceasefire is based on principles of international law and the guidelines of the United Nations. It reflects the efforts of the international community in the fight against international terrorism.

I would like to hope that the Syrian government, our partners in the region and further abroad, will all support the given plan of action.”

Articles by: Pres. Vladimir Putin

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