Russia announces new de-escalation zone north of Syria's Homs

Russia announces new de-escalation zone north of Syria's Homs
1 min read
03 August, 2017
Russia has announced a new "de-escalation zone" starting on Thursday north of Syria's city of Homs, covering almost 150,000 people.
Russia has announced a ceasefire in Syria's Homs.

The Defence Ministry in Moscow and Syria's opposition have agreed to create a new "de-escalation" zone north of the city of Homs, the ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said on Russian state TV.

A ceasefire in this area is set to take affect at 1200 (0900 GMT) on Thursday, he said. The new de-escalation zone will include 84 settlements populated by more than 147,000 people, Konashenkov said.

Last month Russia said its military police will monitor ceasefire zones being established in Syria, the borders of which were agreed during the fifth round of negotiations in Astana held in July.

Moscow has been one of the Syrian regime's main military backers, providing air support to Assad's forces since September 2015.

The airstrikes have resulted in more than 470,000 civilians killed, with countless homes, schools and hospitals also destroyed.

The de-escalation agreements have seen thousands of civilians leave their homes after the Syrian regime recaptured former opposition neighbourhoods.

The Syrian regime has repeatedly broken previous ceasefire agreements, according to war monitors.