Moscow [Russia] May 6 : The agreement to create de-escalation zones in Syria came into force today. Russia, Iran and Turkey on Thursday signed a memorandum in Astana on creating de-escalation zones in Syria, but agreed to continue offensive against militants of the Islamic State (IS).
Quoting Russian Deputy Defense Minister Lt. Gen. Alexander Fomin, news agency TASS said that the memorandum will take effect at 12 a.m. on May 6. The de-escalation zones will be established in four areas. They will particularly cover the Idlib Governorante, some parts of its neighboring areas in the Latakia, Hama and Aleppo Governorates north of the city of Homs, eastern Ghouta, as well as the Daraa and al-Quneitra Governorates in southern Syria.
Russia, Turkey and Iran will form a joint working group on de-escalation which will particularly determine the borders of the de-escalation zones and safe areas.
Maps of these zones and areas will be ready by May 27. Once the zones are mapped, military activities and aircraft flights in the de-escalation zones will be banned, however the offensive against terrorists would continue.
Stanislav Gadzhimagomedov, a deputy chief of the main operation directorate of Russia's General Staff, said "all incidents of violations in the de-escalation zones in Syria will be probed into and decisions on retaliation measures against violators, including through fire suppression, will be taken after such investigations".
Observation posts and checkpoints would be created in the de-escalation zones. Observation posts would control the ceasefire compliance and checkpoints would provide for the movement of unarmed civilians, the delivery of humanitarian aid and assistance to economic activity.