20:03 GMT27 November 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - At least four Syrian servicemen were injured after militants attacked Idlib de-escalation zone, the Russian Centre for Reconciliation of Opposing Sides in Syria said on Sunday.

    "The militants violated the ceasefire regime in Idlib de-escalation zone over the past day. Local settlements were shelled at least fifteen times. As a result, four Syrian servicemen were injured", the statement said.

    The Sochi accord, agreed by Russia's President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in September 2018, created a demilitarized zone along the contact line between the armed opposition and government forces in Idlib.

    Under the terms of the deal, radical militants such as the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) terrorist group, were supposed to withdraw from the demilitarized zone.

    But in recent weeks HTS militants have stepped up their attacks in Idlib and neighboring provinces, prompting Syrian government forces to respond to launching strikes on terrorist targets in the province.

    Most of the province of Idlib is controlled by HTS, an alliance of jihadi groups led by the Al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front terrorist organization.

    Syria has been in a state of civil war for eight years, with the government forces fighting against numerous opposition groups as well as militant and terrorist organizations.

    The conflict in the country produced over five million refugees and over six million internally displaced people. Over 13 million Syrians, nearly half of them children, require humanitarian assistance.

    Russia, Turkey, and Iran are the guarantors of the ceasefire in the conflict-ravaged Syria.

    Russia carries out humanitarian operations across the country on a regular basis and helps Damascus in providing safe passage for the return of Syrian refugees.

    *Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, Al-Qaeda, Nusra Front are terrorist organizations banned in Russia and many other countries.



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