By Sibel Morrow
ANKARA (AA) - Turkey's presidential spokesman said Tuesday that Ankara's policy in Idlib, the restive Syrian province, is based on the 2018 Sochi deal reached with Russia.
"Returning to the Sochi deal is the baseline of Turkey's policy for Idlib," Ibrahim Kalin told reporters after a Cabinet meeting in the capital Ankara.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin signed the deal on Sept. 17, 2018 based on which both sides agreed to set up a demilitarized zone -- in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited -- in Idlib.
The regime and Russian attacks were paused momentarily after the deal and almost 80,000 displaced Syrians returned to their homes. But the regime forces and its ally Russia, resumed their attacks on residential areas in a blatant violation.
More than 1,800 civilians have since been killed due to artillery fires and airstrikes.
Kalin said changing the location of Turkey’s military observation posts in Idlib is “out of question”, adding that Ankara will continue military support and dispatches to safeguard Idlib and the civilians.
He warned of a resounding response in case of a fresh attack on Turkish soldiers "as we did in the last few weeks".
Regarding a meeting in Moscow between Turkish and Russian delegations on Idlib, Kalin said no breakthrough was reached, adding that Turkey rejected proposed documents and maps by Russia.