Syrian opposition welcomes Turkey-Russia deal on Idlib

By Omer Koparan and Burak Karacaoglu

IDLIB, Syria (AA) – The largest armed opposition group in Syria, the National Liberation Front (NLF), announced its support to the agreement between Turkey and Russia regarding northwestern Idlib province.

In a written statement issued via their social media accounts, the NLF said: "We thank the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for his hard efforts and persistent work on preventing this war."

Underscoring that the outcome of the Sochi discussions was an "obvious victory for the Turkish diplomacy", the statement further added that the group "will not give up on its goal to overthrow [Bashar al-]Assad regime."

"We announce our full cooperation with the Turkish ally in their efforts […] We will be also aware and cautious for any treachery by the Russians, the [Assad] regime and the Iranians," the statement said.

On Monday, Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin agreed in in Russia's coastal city of Sochi to establish a demilitarized zone in Idlib.

Ankara and Moscow signed a memorandum of understanding calling for the stabilization of the situation in Idlib's de-escalation zone.

Located near the Turkish border, Idlib is home to more than 3 million Syrians, many of whom fled to other cities following attacks by Assad regime forces.

Last month, the regime announced plans to launch a major military offensive in Idlib, which is controlled by various armed opposition groups.

But, the UN warned that such an offensive would lead to the "worst humanitarian catastrophe in the 21st century".

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