The Black Sea resort of Sochi will host the three heads of Iran, Russia and Turkey on 14 February. The agenda of discussions will revolve around the security situation in Syria. The three Presidents Vladimir Putin, Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Hassan Rohani will discuss the impact of the recently established demilitarised zone around the city of Idlib in northwestern Syria. Discussions will also centre on the security impact of the progressive withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syrian territories to the conflict.
The three presidents will convene in a second Syria summit in Sochi as a follow-up meeting of the original conference held in November 2017. The first Syria summit delineated the security action plan of the three countries to enforce and maintain the December 2016 ceasefire in Syria, including the eventual construction of a security buffer zone in the periphery of Idlib. As a result of the first Sochi summit, the three countries facilitated the return of adversaries into the negotiating table. They developed a political dialogue process best known as Astana talks to discuss the political challenges ingrained within the Syrian civil war. Astana deliberations operate in parallel to the Geneva process – the official forum on peaceful dialogue between Syria’s warring parties.