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    People walk near a Syrian national flag at the President bridge in Damascus, Syria March 14, 2016

    Russia, US Find Efficient Ceasefire Mechanism for Syria

    © REUTERS / Omar Sanadiki
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    The Russian military in Syria and their US colleagues have found an effective mechanism for ceasefire, the head of the Russian Center for Reconciliation said Wednesday.

    "The US side is working with the opposition groups, and has managed to convince them of the need to observe the "silent" period," Lt.-Col. Sergei Kuralenko told journalists.

    He emphasized that the province of Eastern Guta has seen no skirmishes in recent days.

    "Both the American side and the [Syrian] government are carrying out those tasks".

    He noted that the Moscow and Washington have elaborated an effective mechanism for observing the ceasefire regime by introducing the "silent" period.

    Kuralenko said that the Russian Center is accumulating information on prisoners from both sides, as well as those who have been reported missing.

    The Russian Center for Reconciliation also has a direct line with the US analytic group located in Amman and that information is exchanged between Russia and the United States at least once a day. He added that the center could reach any person in the world via phone.

    "Since the founding of the Center on February 27, the level of violence has dropped several times over and gunfire from both sides has dropped eight times," Kuralenko said.

    The ceasefire in Syria, worked out by Russia and the United States, took effect on February 27 with terrorist groups not being part of the agreement.

    According to Kuralenko's assessments, the situation in Syria is stabilizing, but it remains tense in northern Latakia and Aleppo, as well as in several areas in the Damascus Province.

    The reconciliation center's chief said 91 communities have joined the ceasefire agreement.

    "The center's specialists meet with different social groups, elders, field commanders, local authorities. We have held 214 talks. Moreover, 52 agreements have been signed with militants who ceased fire and returned to peaceful life."

    Russia and the United States brokered a "silent" period on Thursday to be implemented for 24 hours in the Damascus’ suburbs and for 72 hours in the northern Latakia province, starting at midnight on April 30.

    Syria has been mired in civil war since 2011, with government forces fighting numerous opposition groups, including the Western-backed allegedly moderate factions, as well as terrorist formations.

    Both Washington and Moscow have been conducting military operations against terrorists in the war-torn country. The US-led international coalition of more than 60 members has been carrying out airstrikes against Daesh targets in Iraq and Syria since August and September 2014 respectively. Russia began its own operation in September 2015 at the request of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

    Related:

    Russian Military Registers 10 Ceasefire Violations in Syria's Latakia
    Agreement to Resume Cessation of Hostilities in Syria Possible in ‘Hours’
    Ceasefire in Syria Continues to Fray as Violence Escalates in Aleppo
    Tags:
    silent period, ceasefire, The Syrian war, Sergei Kuralenko, Syria, United States, Russia
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