US and Russia Announce Feb. 27 as Date for Syrian Ceasefire
JNS.org – The United States and Russia have announced that a planned cease-fire in Syria will come into effect by midnight on Feb. 27, in the latest effort by world powers toend the bloody five-year-old Syrian civil war.
According to the White House, President Barack Obama had called his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to discuss the cease-fire.
In a statement released after the call, the White House said the cease-fire will apply to “those parties to the Syrian conflict that have indicated their commitment to and acceptance of its terms.”
Aside from Russian forces fighting in the country, this will also likely include the Syrian government as well as opposition groups.
But the cease-fire will not apply to two of Syria’s most lethal terror organizations, the Islamic State and the Nusra Front, raising questions on the effectiveness of the cease-fire.
“This is going to be difficult to implement,” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest.
More than 250,000 Syrians have been killed since the civil war began in March 2011, with tens of millions of Syrians being internally displaced and over four million fleeing abroad.
Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon expressed pessimism over the cease-fire attempt.
“It’s difficult to see the reality of a stable cease-fire, with all of the elements [in Syria] agreeing to it,” he said, Haaretz reported.
“ISIS is not a part of this process, the Nusra Front is not a part of this process. I can’t see a comprehensive cease-fire in the horizon,” he added.