The document was signed by the three Syrian ceasefire guarantor states during the fourth round of Astana talks that kicked off on Wednesday. The Russian-proposed initiative stipulates the creation of security zones in the Idlib province, to the north of the city of Homs, in Eastern Ghouta and in the south of the country. Syrian government forces and opposition would be precluded from engaging each other in these areas by means of guarantor-run security buffers, checkpoints and observation posts.
"The guarantors shall in 2 weeks after signing the memorandum form a joint working group on de-escalation (hereinafter referred to as the Joint Working Group) composed of their authorized representatives in order to delineate the lines of the de-escalation areas and security zones as well as to resolve other operational and technical issues related to the implementation of the memorandum," the memorandum reads.
The maps will help separate territories held by moderate opposition groups from areas held by terrorists such as the Daesh and the Nusra Front, both of which are outlawed in many states, including Russia.
On Wednesday and Thursday, Astana is hosting a fresh round of talks between Damascus and the Syrian opposition, with the participation of delegations from the Syria ceasefire guarantor states, as well as from the United Nations, which attends the talks as an observer.