Turkey, which has sent dozens of tanks and hundreds of troops into Syria in an unprecedented incursion, on Saturday welcomed a deal agreed by the United States and Russia for a ceasefire in its conflict-torn neighbor.
“We welcome the agreement,” the foreign ministry said in a statement, saying it was essential that fighting was halted across Syria and humanitarian aid reaches those in need “from the first day” of the ceasefire on the Islamic Eid al-Adha holiday starting Monday.
The statement said that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had “closely followed” the process to secure the ceasefire, following talks with Russian and US counterparts Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama on the sidelines of the G20 in China.
It said Turkey was already making preparations for the delivery of humanitarian aid to Turkey’s northern Aleppo province and would make efforts to “ensure the effective implementation” of the ceasefire.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu spoke to Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov late Friday ahead of the announcement of the deal, both sides said.
“They expressed mutual understanding of the importance of all parties concerned complying with the cessation of hostilities and the resumption of the inter-Syrian negotiation process,” the Russian foreign ministry said.