Turkey and Russia have agreed what they say is a “historic” deal aimed at keeping Kurdish forces away from Syria’s border with Turkey.

It comes during a pause in Turkey’s offensive to drive Kurdish forces out, creating a “safe zone” in the area.

Under the deal, Syrian and Russian forces will immediately oversee a withdrawal of Kurdish forces.

There is no word from the Kurdish fighters, whom Turkey regards as terrorists.

The deal sets out plans for joint Turkish-Russian patrols along the border next week.

A ceasefire brokered by the US was set to expire on Tuesday evening and Turkey had threatened to re-launch its offensive against the Kurdish fighters. It said there was now “no need”.

The agreement was announced after six hours of talks on Tuesday between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian host, Vladimir Putin, in the Black Sea resort of Sochi.

The Turkish offensive began after the US announced a sudden and unexpected withdrawal of its troops from northern Syria. The US troops had been supporting the Kurdish fighters, who have been allies in the fight against the Islamic State (IS) group in the region.

Source:bbc.com

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