Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the main part of the Russian military to begin withdrawing from Syria, claiming the mission has achieved its objectives.
According to a Kremlin spokesman Putin telephoned his ally Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to inform him Russian forces will begin to leave the country from Tuesday.
Russia's role in the conflict allowed Syria to recapture territory from rebels.
The decision was reached at a meeting involving Russian defence and foreign ministers at the Kremlin.
The Russian foreign ministry has been asked by Putin to intensify Russia's role in brokering a peace deal in Syria.
The Kremlin claims Russian military action had created the necessary conditions for the peace process.
Fresh peace talks are currently taking place in Geneva, aimed at resolving the Syrian conflict.
The UN envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has described the latest talks as a "moment of truth" for the conflict.