Member of the Coalition’s political committee Yasser Farhan said that the Astana meeting on Syria must lead to the consolidation of the ceasefire agreement, calling on the regime’s allies to force it to withdraw from the areas they have recently seized in the Wadi Barada valley.
The international community and Russia, Assad’s main ally and a guarantor of the ceasefire agreement, have a special responsibility to force the Assad regime to stop its continued breaches of the truce, Farhan stressed.
“We demand that the Assad regime is prevented from seizing new areas and forcing it to withdraw its forces from all the areas they have seized since the truce took effect on December 29, 2016,” Farhan added.
Experts from Russia, Turkey, Iran and the United Nations held a technical meeting in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana, to discuss in detail the implementation of the ceasefire agreement, Kazakhstan’s Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
“Representatives of Jordan are expected to take part for the first time,” a ministry spokesman said of the talks.
Farhan, who participated as an adviser to the delegation of the FSA groups in the Astana meeting, noted that the Assad regime must compensate the victims of the continuing violations as was stipulated in the Annex III of the letter sent earlier by the Turkish Republic and the Russian Federation to the UN Security Council.
The FSA and rebel groups have proved they were serious about reaching a political solution to the conflict as they have so far abided by the ceasefire agreement they signed off on, Farhan stressed. He pointed out that the participation of FSA and rebel groups in the Astana meeting aims to discuss ways to shore up the truce.
The FSA’s and rebel groups’ delegation to the Astana meeting presented a detailed document suggesting mechanisms for monitoring and accountability for truce violations. Farhan said that the delegation demanded the release of all detainees in Assad’s prisons, most importantly over 13,000 female detainees. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Office)