01:17 GMT08 August 2020
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    Merkel called on Saturday to establish security zones in Syria.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on Saturday to establish security zones in Syria where displaced people could be guaranteed safety.

    Speaking at a press conference in Turkey, Merkel said that in such zones "the ceasefire should be especially enforced to guarantee a high level of security."

    The German chancellor and several senior EU officials paid a visit to the Nizip camp in the Turkish city of Gaziantep near Syria's border on Saturday to assess the living conditions of some 5,000 Syrian refugees.

    Turkey is currently home to some 2.7 million Syrian refugees who have fled a five-year conflict in their native country. Ankara signed a deal with Brussels in March, pledging to keep Syrian refugees in Turkey in exchange for political concessions.

    Turkey has long been calling for a buffer zone on the border with Syria where camps for refugees could be set up to take the load off overcrowded camps on the Turkish side of the border.

    A patchy ceasefire has been in force across Syria for almost two months after the United States and Russia mediated cessation of hostilities between the government and opposition forces.


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