Russia's Vladimir Putin hails Aleppo recapture, moves to expand Syria presence

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday said that the recapture of the devastated city of Aleppo by Syrian regime forces was a 'very important' step towards stabilising the war-torn country.

AFP December 23, 2016 18:15:12 IST
Russia's Vladimir Putin hails Aleppo recapture, moves to expand Syria presence

Moscow: Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday said that the recapture of the devastated city of Aleppo by Syrian regime forces was a "very important" step towards stabilising the war-torn country.

"The liberation of Aleppo from radical elements is a very important part of the normalisation in Syria, and I hope, for the region overall," Putin told defence minister Sergei Shoigu in a meeting, the Kremlin said.

Russias Vladimir Putin hails Aleppo recapture moves to expand Syria presence

Russian president Vladimir Putin. Reuters

The Syrian army said late yesterday that it had retaken full control of Aleppo, scoring its biggest victory against opposition forces since the civil war erupted in 2011. The Kremlin strongman said that after the ouster of rebels from Aleppo, Moscow will now look to end fighting across the country.

"Everything needs to be done for fighting to stop on all Syrian territory," Putin said. "In any case, we will strive toward this." Putin said during his annual press conference today that he hoped that fresh peace talks could get all sides in the conflict to agree to a nationwide ceasefire.

"The next step must be the conclusion of a ceasefire agreement on all of Syria's territory," he said. Putin said that the presidents of Turkey, Iran and Syria had agreed to take part in new peace talks, which Russia had proposed take place in the Kazakh capital Astana.

Moscow has been conducting a bombing campaign in Syria in support of long-time ally President Bashar al-Assad since September 2015 and has taken steps to boost its presence in the country.

Russia forged a deal with Turkey - which supports groups seeking to topple Assad - that saw rebel fighters and civilians leave Aleppo. Shoigu said today that some 34,000 people had been evacuated from rebel-held eastern Aleppo since December 15.

The Kremlin said today that Putin had signed an order to expand Russia's naval facility in the Syrian city of Tartus and allow Russian warships into Syrian waters. Russia's defence ministry said in October that Moscow was poised to transform the Tartus facility into a permanent base, without providing a timeline for its transformation.

Putin that month approved a law ratifying Moscow's deal with Damascus to deploy its forces in the country indefinitely, firming Russia's long-term presence in the country. Russia's bombardment of Aleppo saw the West levelling accusations of war crimes that stung the Kremlin and further strained its fragile relations with the West.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Australia, India retain top-two spots in World Test Championship standings after draw in Sydney
First Cricket News

Australia, India retain top-two spots in World Test Championship standings after draw in Sydney

Both Australia and India bagged 10 points each after the draw, which helped the visitors become the first team to touch the 400-point mark in the WTC table.

CES 2021: World's smallest wearable air purifier that can be worn around your neck to be showcased at the event
News & Analysis

CES 2021: World's smallest wearable air purifier that can be worn around your neck to be showcased at the event

The Airvida air purifier is powered with 'Breathing Pathways Eco Ion Technology' which protects users from airborne allergens.

Leave the World Behind: In Rumaan Alam's apocalyptic narrative, finding reflections of a personal crisis
Arts & Culture

Leave the World Behind: In Rumaan Alam's apocalyptic narrative, finding reflections of a personal crisis

Rumaan Alam writes of a world which one is thrown into without caution, and expected to not only coexist but also find meaning in an involuntary collective experience.