Sunday 22 October 2017

Syria ceasefire must give peace a chance

Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo: Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP
Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo: Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP
Editorial

Editorial

A nationwide ceasefire in Syria, brokered by Russia and Turkey, came into force last night in the latest attempt to end nearly six years of bloodshed. The two countries - which back opposing sides in the conflict - have undertaken to act as guarantors in the bitter dispute, which has claimed thousands of lives during a brutal campaign in which civilians have been slaughtered.

It is telling that Russian President Vladimir Putin was prepared to openly acknowledge that the deal is fragile when he announced the details in Moscow. We have been here before and, within a matter of hours, have seen fervent hopes dashed.

Of course, in times of war normal rules do not apply: the truce will be limited to agreed areas and named factions.

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