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Iran Press TV

Syria ceasefire does not include terrorist-held areas: Iran

Iran Press TV

Fri Feb 12, 2016 2:16PM

A senior Iranian official says an agreement reached following marathon talks in Munich on nationwide ceasefire in Syria does not include areas held by terrorist groups.

Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian made the remarks on Friday on the sidelines of a meeting of the International Syria Support Group (ISSG).

"Specifically, two issues were discussed in the meeting today. Parties arrived at a conclusion regarding the ceasefire that should be implemented nationwide except for areas held by terrorist groups," Amir-Abdollahian said.

He added that the participants at the meeting emphasized that the truce should be implemented within two or three days but no later than within one week.

"And the second issue is that humanitarian aid should reach all areas in Syria including the cities of Fa'ah, Kafriya and Zabadani and that the aid will only contain food, medicine and other humanitarian aid," the Iranian diplomat said.

He added that the participants faced "many challenges" in the meeting because no decision was taken about the list of terrorist groups.

"On the other hand, some parties are still insisting on their wrong policies but we hope we will witness the beginning of the ceasefire in the areas where terrorists do not exist and that will also see an acceleration of delivering humanitarian aid," Amir-Abdollahian said.

He said the Munich meeting also stressed that Syrian talks should resume in Geneva on the date set by UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura "so that the political process could be followed."

The comments came after ISSG members agreed on the "cessation of hostilities" in Syria following a meeting in Munich on Thursday.

De Mistura announced a halt in the latest round of peace negotiations on February 3 after the Saudi-backed opposition group, known as the High Negotiations Committee (HNC), refused to attend the sessions in Geneva.

The HNC refused to continue after the Syrian army, backed by Russian air cover, made significant gains against Takfiri militants on several fronts, particularly in the strategic northern province of Aleppo.

De Mistura said earlier that he hoped a new round of discussions would begin by February 25.

The so-called Syrian Center for Policy Research reported that 400,000 Syrians have been killed since the outbreak of the crisis as opposed to the latest UN toll of 260,000.

It said that another 70,000 people have perished due to the lack of adequate health services, food, clean water, sanitation and proper housing, especially for those displaced within conflict zones.

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