"The situation has clearly become better. The liberation of eastern Aleppo marks a major breakthrough," he said. "There are still many challenges. The situation is far from being stable. But [the victory in Aleppo] has brought hope that the conflict will be resolved."
"We have to remember that there is diplomacy and there is reality. Sadly, these two do not always overlap," Abbas Juma warned, adding that he was optimistic about Syria's future. "I share the view expressed by many experts that the situation [in Syria] will no longer remain at an impasse. Russia, Turkey and Iran have real leverage," he said.
"Terrorists will pay" for the murder of Russia's envoy to Turkey, he noted. "They will all be destroyed by hook or by crook. I am more than sure of it."
Prominent Russian diplomat Andrey Karlov was fatally shot by Mevlut Mert Altintas, a Turkish police officer, at an art gallery exhibition in Ankara. The Russian Foreign Ministry described the attack as a terrorist act. A farewell ceremony for the Russian ambassador took place in Moscow on Thursday, with President Vladimir Putin attending.