US and Russian negotiators announced a cessation of hostilities between “some” of the groups fighting in Syria which would come into effect on Friday. Al Jazeera reports that the agreement “calls on all sides to sign up to the agreement by midday on February 26 and to stop fighting by midnight,” But (and there’s always a but..)
Al Jazeera’s diplomatic editor James Bays, reporting from New York, said some critics believed the timing of the deal would allow different sides in the conflict to push for more territory in the lead-up to the truce on Friday.
“Given everything that is happening in Syria, there is not a great deal of optimism about the proposed cessation of hostilities, particularly as many observers fear there will be an increase in the violence – with the warring sides trying to make gains in the days before it is due to start,” he said.
Meanwhile, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad called a parliamentary election for April 13, according to an official statement.