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US, Russia reach partial Syria truce deal

The United States and Russia have reached an agreement on a cessation of hostilities in Syria, to go into effect Feb. 27, yet the plan excludes both the Islamic State and al-Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra.
U.S. Foreign Secretary John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (L) attend the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) meeting in Munich, Germany, February 11, 2016, together with members of the Syrian opposition and other officials. REUTERS/Michael Dalder - RTX26J5J

WASHINGTON — The United States and Russia reached agreement on a partial Syria truce to go into effect Feb. 27, after intensive Russian-American negotiations in Geneva culminated in a phone call Feb. 22 between US President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Under the complex “cessation of hostilities” agreement, announced in a US-Russian joint statement after Obama and Putin spoke by phone, the warring Syria parties, with the exception of the Islamic State (IS) group and al-Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra, have until noon Feb. 26 Damascus time to inform the United States or Russia whether they intend to accept the truce deal.

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