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Syria talks in Astana aim for lasting ceasefires

Representatives of government and opposition meet again in Kazakh capital with focus primarily on de-escalation zones.

Kazakhstan

Representatives of the Syrian government and opposition groups are meeting once again in the capital of Kazakhstan.

Thursday's sixth round of talks in Astana - brokered by Russia, Turkey and Iran - is aimed at implementing lasting cease-fires in so-called de-escalation zones in Syria.

Sergey Lavrov, Russia's foreign minister, told Russian state media that delegations from Russia, Iran, and Turkey, with the attendance of experts from the US, Jordan and the UN would discuss "the establishment of a de-escalation zone in Idlib".

"Astana is exactly the additional tool which helped groups to reach some technical agreement on the ground which basically lay the ground to further negotiations," Alexey Khlebnikov, of the Russian International Affairs Council, said.

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