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Putin to host Rouhani, Erdogan in Sochi for Syria talks

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
L-R: Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Russian President Vladimir Putin and their Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan are to meet in Sochi on Nov. 22.

Russian President Vladimir Putin will host his Iranian and Turkish counterparts Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan next week for summit talks on the ongoing conflict in Syria and other regional developments.

Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reported on Thursday that the three presidents will meet at Putin's official residence in the Black Sea resort of Sochi for talks on November 22.

The three-way summit comes as Tehran, Moscow and Turkey cooperate with increasing intensity to end the conflict in Syria, even though Ankara officially stands on the opposite side of the conflict.

The three countries are already sponsoring peace talks in the Kazakh capital of Astana and also implementing a plan to establish de-escalation zones in key flashpoint areas of Syria.

The militant-held northwestern province of Idlib, the central province of Homs and the Eastern Ghouta area outside Damascus are the regions which the three countries want to establish as the de-escalation zones. 

The talks in Astana have been going on in tandem with another series of talks held in Geneva and brokered by the UN.

Participants of Syria peace talks attend a meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan on January 23, 2017. (Photo by Reuters)

In early November, Turkey said Russia had postponed a Syria peace conference due to Ankara's concern over the presence of a Syrian Kurdish group which is backed by the US.

Kurdish groups such as the so-called Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its affiliate People's Protection Units (YPG) are currently in control of nearly all of Syria’s northern border with Turkey.

Ankara accuses the PYD of having links with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been waging a bloody war inside Turkey since the 1980s.

Since early 2011, Syria has been experiencing a deadly conflict the government in Damascus blames on foreign sponsors of terrorism.

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