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US, Russia 'agree Syria ceasefire' amid Trump-Putin G20 meeting

The meeting between the two leaders lasted over two hours [AFP]

Date of publication: 7 July, 2017

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US officials say the United States and Russia have reached an agreement for a cease-fire in southwest Syria, according to Associated Press sources.
US officials say the United States and Russia have reached an agreement for a cease-fire in southwest Syria, according to Associated Press sources.

The cease-fire is set to take effect July 9 at noon Damascus time. Word of the cease-fire has emerged as President Donald Trump was meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The meeting, which has now concluded, lasted over two hours.

The officials weren’t authorised to discuss the cease-fire publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The deal marks a new level of involvement for the US in trying to resolve Syria’s civil war.

A separate deal to create “de-escalation zones” was brokered Russia, Turkey and Iran, but not the US Follow-up talks this week in Kazakhstan to finalise a cease-fire in those zones failed to reach a deal.

The US and Russia have been backing opposing sides in Syria’s war.

US President Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin held their first face-to-face meeting Friday at a G20 summit

Historic meeting

US President Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin held their first face-to-face meeting Friday at a G20 summit marred by violent protests and a rift between America and its Western allies over climate change and trade.

"We look forward to a lot of very positive things happening for Russia, for the United States and for everyone concerned," Trump said. "It's an honour to be with you."

Putin told the US leader: "I'm delighted to be able to meet you personally Mr President. And I hope as you have said, our meeting will yield concrete results."

The blockbuster encounter could sway issues ranging from the North Korean crisis and conflicts in Syria and Ukraine to US-Russian disarmament treaties, world trade and global warming, analysts say.

Public images of the interaction between the brash property tycoon and ice-cool ex-KGB agent are likely to be dissected frame by frame for any sign of rapprochement or estrangement.

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