MIDEAST >Turkey, Russia sign memorandum to coordinate strikes in Syria


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Delegations from the Russian and the Turkish chiefs of staff have signed an agreement to define mechanisms regarding flight security and cooperation between the countries during operations against “terrorist targets” in Syria following a meeting in Moscow, the Turkish Armed Forces announced Jan. 12.

The statement said the meetings were held between Russian and Turkish military representatives to ensure flight security and prevent undesired incidents during operations in Syria.

The agreement also stated mechanisms would be determined in terms of coordination and cooperation between Russian and Turkish warplanes to ensure flight security during offensives against terrorist threats in Syria.

Last month, Moscow and Ankara agreed to back a cease-fire between the Syrian government and rebel groups, with the truce largely holding in vast areas of the country, though clashes have continued to occur near Damascus.

The fighting has notably damaged water infrastructure, risking further military escalation, the United Nations’ Syria envoy, Staffan de Mistura, said earlier on Jan. 12, adding that meetings in Moscow and Ankara would address the issue.

Recently, Russia began hitting Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) positions near al-Bab.

Russian support came after Turkey criticized the U.S.-led international coalition for not backing its military offensive against ISIL.


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