Ankara : Turkey warned that planned Syrian peace talks co-sponsored by Russia were at risk, calling on the Damascus regime of President Bashar al-Assad to halt violations of a ceasefire.
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Iran, the main backer of Assad along with Russia, must put pressure on allied Shiite militias to abide by the truce that is to form the basis for a ceasefire. If the truce is properly observed, he said the peace talks would start on January 23 in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana under the auspices of Turkey and Russia. “If we do not stop the increasing violations, the Astana process could fail. After the ceasefire, we see violations,” Cavusoglu told the state-run Anadolu news agency in an interview. “When we look at who commits these violations, it is Hezbollah, in particular Shiite groups and the regime,” he added.