First Published: 2018-03-15

Turkey to host Syria summit on April 4 with Russia, Iran
Planned meeting will be second such tripartite summit following one in Sochi, as three powers seek to salvage efforts to end Syria's conflicts.
Middle East Online

ISTANBUL - The presidents of Turkey, Russia and Iran will meet for a three-way summit on Syria in Istanbul on April 4, the Turkish foreign ministry said on Thursday.

The meeting will be hosted by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and will be the second such tripartite summit following one in November in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi.

The summit will be attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani as the three leaders seek to salvage their efforts to end the conflict.

As part of peace talks in the Kazakh capital Astana sponsored by Ankara, Moscow and Tehran, the three countries' foreign ministers will meet on Friday and will discuss preparations for next month's summit, the foreign ministry said in a statement.

The three countries have worked together despite being on different sides. While Iran and Russia have provided military support to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Turkey has repeatedly called for his ousting and supported Syrian rebels.

Ankara on January 20 launched an air and ground offensive against the Syrian Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) militia in its enclave of Afrin in northern Syria.

The operation dubbed Olive Branch follows Turkey's 2016-2017 offensive named Euphrates Shield in Syria against the YPG and the Islamic State (IS) extremist group.

As part of the Astana process, Turkey, Iran and Russia have set out to create four so-called de-escalation zones in Idlib, the greater Damascus area, the southern region of Daraa and the city of Homs.

Intense bombardment has continued in Eastern Ghouta, which was designated in May 2017 as a "de-escalation zone".

On February 18, the regime backed by Russia launched a campaign against the rebel enclave near Damascus which has killed 1,249 civilians, including 252 children.

 

Russia mulls supplying S-300 missile systems to Syria

Morocco, EU start talks on new fisheries deal

Bashir fires Sudan foreign minister

US has 'concerns' about Turkey holding fair vote under state of emergency

Saudi women embrace sports headscarves

FIFA to return to Morocco to check hotels, stadiums

Turkey in shock after violent Istanbul derby

Iraq pays first war reparations to Kuwait since 2014

Fiery kites adopted as new tactic by Gaza protesters

Romanian president slams plan to move Israel embassy

Western strikes on Syria bring no change whatsoever

Trump criticises OPEC for high oil prices

Syria says rebels south of capital surrender

Market has capacity to absorb higher oil prices: Saudi minister

Putin 'ready' for Trump summit

Saudi Arabia to host first public film screening

HRW criticises Lebanon for evicting Syria refugees

Saudi says intercepted ballistic missile from Yemen

Washington: Assad still has 'limited' chemical capability

European MPs urge US not to scrap Iran deal

Oil price soars to highest level in years

Two more pro-Kurdish MPs stripped of Turkey seats

Oil theft 'costing Libya over $750 million annually'

Turkey's snap polls: bold gambit or checkmate for Erdogan?

Iran arrests senior official over public concert

Bahrain sentences 24 to jail, strips citizenship

UN experts urge Iran to cancel Kurd's death sentence

Moderate quake strikes near Iran nuclear power plant

Syria regime forces caught in surprise IS attack

Turkey sentences 18 to life for killing ‘hero’ coup soldier

Exxon faces setback in Iraq as oil and water mix

Libya to clamp down on fuel smuggling

Yemen to arrest colonel for overlooking African migrant rape

Erdogan sends Turkey to snap polls on June 24

Qatar joins Gulf military exercise in apparent compromise

Saudi-Russia oil alliance likely to undercut OPEC

UN in security talks with Syria on chemical probe

Riyadh says two al Qaeda militants killed in Yemen

Record of women candidates in Lebanon, but you can't tell from TV

Sudan protests to UN over Egypt voting in disputed area

Erdogan calls Turkey snap polls for June 24

Rights watchdog say African migrants face rape, torture in Yemen

Nine years since last vote, Lebanon in election fever

Israeli fire neat Gaza border injures five Palestinian

Egypt army says killed jihadist leader in Sinai