Commenting on the recent summoning of the Russian ambassador to Turkey, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: "The process of implementing agreements on de-escalation zones [in Syria] and the process of political settlement, in particular, the preparation of the National Congress in Sochi, require constant contacts [with Turkey] at various levels — on the expert level, at the highest level, on others as well. These contacts are being maintained, and, of course, such a close dialogue will continue."
The remark comes in the wake of Turkey's decision to summon Russian and Iranian envoys to the country, seeking to cease the Syrian government's violation of de-escalation zone borders in Idlib, claimed by Ankara.
As Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu explained on January 10, Moscow and Tehran, as guarantors of the Syrian peace settlement, should fulfill their commitments under the ceasefire deal and demanded an end to the alleged advance of the government forces in the de-escalation zone. In his previous statements, Cavusoglu has accused the Syrian government of "attacking" so-called "moderate opposition" in Idlib under the semblance of fighting terrorism.
Recently the Syrian troops have launched a military operation against terrorists in Idlib and managed to gain control over the Abu Duhur airfield, also driving militants out from 12 villages around it.
Ankara's statement came amid reports from the Russian Defense Ministry of an attempted terrorist attack on Russian military facilities in Syria, announced on January 8. The attacks were reportedly carried out from the area to the southwest of Idlib. The Russian forces managed to bring to the ground at least three and to destroy seven drones that were used for the attacks, capturing some of the rest.
Following the assault, the Russian Defense Ministry had sent letters to the Chief of the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces, urging them to fulfill its responsibilities to ensure compliance with the ceasefire regime and to prevent such attacks.