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30 Jan, 2017 17:05

‘Syria safe zones is a game-changer, bad news for ISIS’

‘Syria safe zones is a game-changer, bad news for ISIS’

We can be cautiously optimistic regarding developments in Syria, said Beirut-based journalist Martin Jay, adding that President Trump’s push to create safe zones is a step in the right direction.

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Moscow is ready to discuss the idea with Washington.

President Donald Trump said he would “absolutely do safe zones in Syria" for people fleeing the violence.

RT: How much of a game-changer is this development, now that we’re hearing that America and Russia are pretty much on the same page with regarding Syria as it stands on the safe zones? It is good news, isn’t it?

Martin Jay: I think we can be cautiously optimistic. But I think it is a game-changer. We’re moving in the right direction. Previously we haven’t had anything, which looks like common sense on the table before. I think now it is important that Trump seems to back up his word. He said he will do something about ISIS and this is a step in the right direction.

RT: What it is going to mean for the people caught up in this awful ongoing war? Is it going to be good news for them?

MJ: You’ve got to remember that there is an awful a lot of people in Syria who have been besieged, trapped in the cities, and haven’t been able to have access to humanitarian aid, food, and blankets, and so forth. It is going to be welcome news for any of those people in that region. It is a bad news day for ISIS and any extremist groups there. Traditionally the strength, their forte,if you like, - is that they’ve managed to position themselves in concentrated areas of civilian accommodations. It has been very difficult to have a real effective impact through bombing them, whether that is American or Arab coalition forces in the past. From that perspective, safe zones could have a real impact. It is very important to separate the extremists from civilians. Today is interesting, because we’ve seen Trump’s decisions that he takes on his own. We’re also seeing Trump’s decisions that he takes when he is advised by senior people in his administration. I am absolutely certain this decision is coming from James Mattis, the new defense chief.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.