Merkel says Putin confirmed commitment to Syria ceasefire

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 04, 2016 7:06 AM

PARIS (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday that President Vladimir Putin confirmed Russia's commitment to a ceasefire that took hold in Syria last weekend during a phone conversation with four EU leaders.

"I would like to stress one more time that the commitment to hold the ceasefire was confirmed as a key message by the Russian president: only attacks on Daesh and al-Nusra Front," Merkel said during a news conference with French President Francois Hollande.

She was referring to U.S.- and Russia-backed plans for a "cessation of hostilities" in Syria that excludes groups such as Islamic State and al-Qaeda's al-Nusra Front.

Turning to EU talks with Turkey on Monday to discuss efforts to stem the flow of migrants reaching Europe, Merkel said: "Our efforts are not done yet ... I understand that Turkey also expects Europe to deliver."

(Reporting by Paul Carrel and Maria Sheahan; Writing by Joseph Nasr; Editing by Caroline Copley)