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US, Russia agree on ceasefire plan in Syria

US Secretary of State John Kerry Photograph: (Getty)

Geneva, Switzerland Sep 09, 2016, 10.23 PM (IST)

The United States and Russia have agreed to a ''cessation of hostilities'' in Syria from September 12, the first day of Eid.

Both countries have also agreed to carry out joint air strikes in Syria if the ceasefire holds up for a week, AFP quoted Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as saying.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said if the ceasefire remained imposed for a week, the two countries would set up a common military hub to fight Islamic State and Al Nusra in Syria. 

"The United States is going the extra mile here because we believe Russia and my colleague have the capability to press the Assad regime to stop this conflict and come to the table and make peace," said US Secretary of State John Kerry. 

The peace deal comes after marathon talks held between the two countries in Geneva.

The meeting was not without its fair share of drama as the talks were on the brink of collapse. Delays and uncertainties from both sides were the main reasons for the delay in agreeing to the deal.

Turkey, which launched its first major military incursion into Syria two and half weeks ago, on Saturday welcomed the deal for a ceasefire in its neighbouring country.

"We welcome the agreement," the foreign ministry said in a statement. Provision of aid around Aleppo was key, the statement said.

The war in Syria has been raging for the last five years. It has claimed around 300,000 lives.

(WION with inputs from agencies)

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