MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, the foreign and defense ministers of Russia, Iran and Turkey met in Moscow to discuss the situation in Syria, including in Aleppo. They agreed in a joint statement on the revival of the political process to end the conflict in the country. The document stressed the importance of respecting Syria’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity. “First of all, this is an important development after so many years of a civil war. Now we can see a gleam of hope for the resolution of the Syrian crisis and civil war. It is quite important that the party meeting has a result about working together for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Syria and fight against terrorism… This is changing the format… And we have a hope for the territorial integrity, to the reservation of territorial integrity and sovereignty of Syria,” Yilmaz said. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu attend a press conference in Moscow on December 20, 2016 © AFP 2016/ Natalia KOLESNIKOVA Time Running Out for Saudi Interference in Syria as New Axis Takes Charge According to Yilmaz, the agreement of Russian, Turkish and Iranian ministers that regime change in Syria is not a condition for the crisis settlement is a good development, which means that all parties to the conflict in Syria could come together in order to work out a way for talks and possible peace deal. Since 2011, Syria has been engulfed in a civil war, following the protests that had turned violent, as part of the so-called Arab Spring. Over the recent months, Aleppo became a major battleground in Syria. On December 16, the Russian Defense Ministry’s center for Syrian reconciliation said that the Syrian army operation to liberate the eastern neighborhoods of Aleppo was over, and that the Syrian government troops were eliminating separate hotbeds of militant resistance
The Russia-Turkey-Iran format of cooperation provides hope for Syria crisis settlement and preserving territorial integrity and sovereignty of the war-torn country, Ozturk Yilmaz, a deputy chair responsible for foreign relations of the Republican People’s Party (CHP), told Sputnik on Wednesday.