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SDF accepts Russia-brokered ceasefire, withdraws from Turkish border

The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) has accepted the ceasefire agreement brokered by Russia and Turkey last week and agreed to completely withdraw its Kurdish-led force from the Syria-Turkey border, the SDF said Sunday.

Speaking to Rudaw in Amuda, northwest of Qamishli, SDF spokesman Mustafa Bali said the Kurdish-led force has begun withdrawing to a position 32 km from the border, as demanded by the Turkish government.

“After a few days of dialogue and discussion between our general commander and the Russian government and army, and in accordance with the Sochi Agreement, and in order to protect the security of the region, and halting the dangers of an invasion and a new conflict in the region, our forces, under the guarantor of Russia, are withdrawing from the region as deep as 32 km from the border,” Bali said.

“And on the basis of the same guarantee from Russia, a political dialogue with the central government in Damascus will start to find a political solution. Our forces will take necessary measures and step on these foundations,” the press spokesman added.

“After extensive discussions with the Russian Federation on our previous objection to some terms of the memorandum, we agreed to the implementation of the deal, based on the Sochi Agreement of October 22, 2019, to stop the Turkish aggression on northeastern Syria,” the SDF said in a statement.

“The SDF is redeploying to new positions away from the Turkish-Syrian border across northeast Syria in accordance with the terms of the agreement in order to stop the bloodshed and to protect the inhabitants of the region from Turkish attacks. Our forces in the border zone are being replaced by border guards of the central government.”