After Russia’s military intervention in Syria in September 2015, Syrian government forces advanced into key cities and areas controlled by the armed opposition forces. For example, Syrian government forces took control over most of Aleppo from rebel groups in 2016. Turkey and Russia brokered a ceasefire agreement between the Syrian regime and the opposition in Ankara, Turkey on December 29, 2016. Following that agreement, civilians were evacuated from eastern Aleppo and provided a safe exit. After that, Russia focused its efforts on building a coalition of players in Astana, Kazakhstan’s capital. They launched the Astana process in January 2017 with Turkey, Iran and Russia as the guarantors of the Astana Process.