Russian Federation suggests USA to blame for holding up Syria deal Updated

American Airlines and Jet Blue Airways charter flights wait to depart from Havana's Jose Marti International Airport

The ceasefire begins at sundown Monday, Kerry said, coinciding with the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said that the plan can reduce violence in Syria and help the rival governments more effectively target the Islamic State and al-Qaida. "This step is absolutely essential", Kerry said. Washington wants Assad's air force grounded to stop its attacks on opposition forces and civilians.

At one point, Mr Lavrov said he was considering "calling it a day" on talks, expressing frustration with what he described as an hours-long wait for a United States response.

United Nations envoy on Syria Staffan de Mistura said a successful outcome from the talks could provide a major boost towards resolving the conflict.

Will it stick? John Kerry, left, and Sergei Lavrov shake hands on a new Syrian deal. They provided no details on how they would deal with violations.

"This all creates the necessary conditions for resumption of the political process, which has been stalling for a long time", Lavrov told a news conference.

Final approval from Washington came after Kerry spent hours late Friday on a secure conference video with top national security officials in Washington, some of whom - particularly in the Pentagon - have disagreed with proposed coordination of counterterrorism airstrikes with Russian Federation.

Amusing side note: The Washington Post notes that Sergei Lavrov attempted to score "some propaganda points" with the media attending the press conference where the agreement was announced by providing them with pizza and bottles of vodka. It is seen as a first step in what could become a broader military pact between Russian Federation and the United States that has so far remained elusive.

On Sunday, Syrian government forces were reported to have recaptured parts of Aleppo which were lost to rebels last month, placing rebel-held districts in the city's east once again under siege. A senior Obama administration official confirmed the United States was locked in internal discussions. Others have insisted that Russian Federation is certain that its chances of agreement would worsen, particularly if Hillary Clinton is elected.

Both sides have failed to deliver their ends of the bargain over several previous truces, but the new arrangement goes further by promising a new US-Russian counter-terrorism alliance, only a year after President Barack Obama chastised Russia for a military intervention that US officials said was mainly created to keep Assad in power and target more moderate anti-Assad forces.

The deal includes intelligence sharing and targeting co-ordination, a level of U.S.

Washington must persuade "moderate" rebels to break ranks with the Nusra Front, al-Qaeda's Syria affiliate, and other extremist groups.

"It is the primary responsibility of the leading powers, first of all Russiaand the United States to do everything to create the necessary conditions to settle this very hard conflict despite all the problems that have arisen", Lavrov said.

Both Kerry and Lavrov dismissed suggestions that the military coordination to target al-Nusra was a USA concession to Russian Federation. After the seven-day cessation of hostilities and delivery of aid, "US and Russian experts will work together to defeat Daesh and Nusra", Kerry added.

It is hoped the truce will allow urgently needed aid to reach starving people in areas such as second city Aleppo.

"If Aleppo is at peace, we believe that the prospects for a diplomatic solution will brighten", he said.

The track record for previous Syrian agreements is not good.

Pentagon and USA intelligence officials have spoken out against the idea of closer military cooperation with Russian Federation, in particular the sharing of locations of opposition groups that have fought to topple Assad. Some of those groups are supported by the US.



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