"After the establishment of the cessation of hostilities on December 30, 2016 through the cooperation of Russia and Turkey, there have been signs of improvement of the situation," Zakharova told reporters. "The ceasefire is maintained throughout the country, including in the south, where the groups, which for the most part have not participated in the talks in Ankara in December 2016, are active."
Moscow hopes that the meeting on Syrian settlement in Astana on January 23 will be a "new milestone on the road to peace in Syria," Zakharova said.
"We expect that the meeting on the Syrian settlement planned for this date will become a new milestone on the road to peace in the troubled Syria, and give a significant impetus for all Syrian parties on the renewed intra-Syrian talks on February 8 in Geneva," Zakharova said.
She noted that Moscow hopes that the efforts to launch political dialogue on Syria will be successful.
"We hope that efforts aimed at launching a political settlement [in Syria] will be effective," she added, calling on all stakeholders to promote the negotiating process.
At the same time, Zakharova said, Moscow regrets that some countries are continuing their efforts to politicize the issue of the use of chemical weapons in Syria in order to remove Bashar Assad.
"The ceaseless attempts of the so-called frenemies of Syria, which are becoming maniacal in nature, to politicize the situation on the Syrian chemical dossier with an aim to discredit the [president Bashar] Assad government are deeply regrettable," Zakharova told a briefing.
Never miss a story again — sign up to our Telegram channel and we'll keep you up to speed!