Over 200 members of an armed opposition from the al-Waer district in Homs, Syria, agreed to use the president’s offer of amnesty and to lay down arms, local media reported Monday. the governor of Homs province reportedly said that the Syrian Armed Forces opened an additional passage from Homs for civilians who would like to leave the town with the armed opposition and refuted the rumors that civilians had been forced to leave the district of al-Waer. On Saturday, the governor said that the first group of militants and their relatives to leave the al-Waer district, made up a total of 300 militants and 1,065 civilians.
Syrian government forces have retaken the areas lost yesterday in Damascus during an anti-regime offensive, according to state news agency SANA, citing the General Staff of the Armed Forces. According to the General Staff, loyalist forces retook control of the “points where terrorists had infiltrated”, referring to opposition militants. Members of al-Qaeda also participated in the anti-government offensive on Sunday in the Jobar quarter.
Iran’s permanent representative envoy to the UN said Iran together with Russia and Turkey as Guarantor States will spare no efforts to guarantee the Ceasefire Regime in Syria, agreed on 30 December 2016. Here a citation: “The Islamic Republic of Iran, with the aim of ending the ongoing crises in Syria and within the framework of its principled policy based on respecting the Syrian territorial integrity and sovereignty, finding a political solution to the crisis through intra-Syrian talks and objection to the instrumental use of terrorism for political gains; has taken effective measures upon the request of the Syrian Arab Republic in different political, humanitarian and anti-terrorism areas, including sending humanitarian assistance to Syrian civilians”.
After Russian bombings in Syria, the violation of Turkish airspace and the support of Assad, relationship between the Washington and Moscow have become even colder. However, a cooperation agreement against Islamic State is possible.
Ministry of Defense of Russian Federation could accept the Pentagon proposal on coordination in the fight against ISIS in Syria. This is what the Kremlin leaked Wednesday 7th October, speaking of ongoing diplomatic relathioship with the White House after the US-Russia summit at the United Nations on 29th September.
Since last 30th September, when Russia began to bomb Syria, it started a double escalation. From military point of view, with Russian fighters brought to Palmira, in the provinces of Aleppo and Hama, where they helped regular army against Islamist insurgents, but not belonging to Daesh. Russian support of Assad, challenged by the United States and NATO, and the violation of Turkish airspace caused the diplomatic escalation.
Indeed, there were several give and take between the West, which accuses Russia to hit Syrian not fundamentalists rebels and play jihadists game, and the Kremlin, which has branded these accusations as hoaxes.
“We reject the Russian assertion that all armed opponents of the “brutal” Mr Assad were terrorists, ” president of the US Barack Obama boomed out While minister of Defence Michael Fallon stated that only 5% of Russians raid hit the Caliphate: “Our evidence indicates they are dropping unguided munitions in civilian areas, killing civilians, and they are dropping them against the Free Syrian forces fighting Assad. Percentage of victims proved by The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) .
“The only true way to combat international terrorism, in Syria and in the territories of neighboring countries where international terrorism is rampant, is to act preemptively by fighting and killing terrorists which have captured territories,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said. While Minister of Foriegn Affairs Sergey Lavrov explained that “we have the same approach: it’s ISIL, Al-Nusra and other terrorist groups. We believe that the Free Syrian Army should be part of the political process, like some other armed groups on the ground.”
But this tension on the diplomatic level is also involving Turkey. The violation of Turkish airspace, caused by “bad weather” according to Russian reason, opened a diplomatic incident with Turkish President Recep Erdogan, historically enemy of Assad and accused to taking in Syria many foreign fighters enlisted by the Caliphate.
The Kremlin explanations were rejected by Erdogan and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. The statement published by Member States of the Atlantic Alliance last 5th October called on Russia “to end air strikes on the Syrian opposition and civilians” and commented on violation of Turkish airspace as “the extreme danger of such irresponsible behaviour”.
However, this argument could be mitigated by a possible cooperation agreement between Washington and Moscow. Moreover, not only Russia, but also the West decided to intervene in Syria. The United States (and maybe Italy) are reconquering Iraqi city defeated by Islamic State. France, Australia and Great Britain (pending the ratification of the Parliament) are sending their fighters to Syria.
Russian annoying attitude against the United States and NATO probably concealed one purpose: to involve the Western partners in the war against Islamic State. This goal could be reached in the coming days.