Ceasefire guarantor states Russia, Iran and Turkey have adopted a memorandum on the creation of four security zones in Syria, during peace talks in the Kazakh capital of Astana.
The de-escalation zones were earlier proposed by Russia. They are aimed at separating extremist groups, including Islamic State terrorists (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) and Jabhat al-Nusra (Al-Nusra Front), from the moderate opposition.
Idlib, Latakia and Homs are included in the safe zones, as well as parts of Aleppo, according to the Turkish Foreign Ministry. Under the memorandum, any fighting between government forces and armed opposition will cease within the safe zones.
Checkpoints and observation posts are to be positioned along the de-escalation lines within the safe zones, according to the document. They will provide free movement of unarmed civilians and humanitarian access to the areas, under guarantor states’ control.