00:56 GMT02 December 2020
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    Russia, Iran and Turkey have agreed to strengthen cooperation in the fight against terrorism, including against Daesh terrorist organization, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a joint press conference in Sochi after a meeting with Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    "[We] confirmed readiness to intensify cooperation for the final destruction of Daesh, al-Nusra Front [outlawed in Russia] and other extremist groups," Putin said after talks with the leaders of Iran and Turkey, adding that all three leaders noted significant achievements in the joint fight against terrorism.

    Putin went on to say that the successful anti-terrorist efforts in Syria open up a "completely new stage in the crisis settlement" in the country, which means "achieving long-term, comprehensive normalization in Syria, political development in the post-conflict period." He stressed that Syria should remain "sovereign, united and integral."

    Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan meets with Iran's President Hassan Rouhani in Sochi, Russia, November 22, 2017
    © REUTERS / Yasin Bulbul/Turkish Presidential Palace
    Speaking on the joint work on the Syrian settlement, the Russian leader noted that the agreements made by Moscow, Ankara, and Tehran will speed up the peace process and reduce tensions in the Middle East. In this regard, he underscored that all three leaders were united in promoting the Astana process of negotiations on Syria. As Putin pointed out the Astana format has "proved its effectiveness, has contributed to a significant reduction in the level of violence in Syria, creating conditions for the return of refugees and internally displaced persons."

    Moreover, the presidents of Iran and Turkey have supported Russia's initiative of a national dialogue in Syria. Vladimir Putin noted that the initial steps for the promotion of inclusive intra-Syrian dialogue have been outlined.

    "I will stress again that the fate of Syria must be determined by the Syrians themselves – both by supporters of the current government and the opposition," Putin stated.

    To promote the intra-Syrian dialogue, the Syrian National Dialogue Congress will be held in Russia's Black Sea resort of Sochi. Putin said the Congress should gather the representatives of different political parties, opposition movements, and ethnic groups to discuss the issues of future Syria's statehood and the new constitution.

    READ MORE: Putin Discusses Syria in Phone Call With Trump – Kremlin

    Taking the floor after Vladimir Putin, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani praised the trilateral meeting, saying it will contribute to the peace process in Astana.

    "Our three states are urging all countries of the world to assist in establishing peace in Syria, in creating conditions for the return of Syrian refugees home, and for ensuring conditions for the Syrian state’s economic recovery," Rouhani said.

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was the last member of the conference to deliver a speech, noted that the three sides managed to come to a common opinion over the need to provide support for a large-scale, free, fair political process led by the Syrian people. He touched upon the issue of economic cooperation between the countries as well.

    "We came to a common conclusion that we need to more actively develop relations in all sectors," Erdogan said after the trilateral summit on Syria in Sochi.

    Tags:
    press conference, Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Iran, Turkey, Syria, Russia
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