Buses in Syria's Eastern Ghouta for more evacuations

07 April, 2018, 00:41 | Author: Jason Torres
  • Buses will carry rebel fighters and their families from their final stronghold in eastern Ghouta to Jarabulus leaving Assad’s troops free to occupy the territory

Earlier, Russian reconciliation center for Syria said that a total of 153,140 people have been evacuated from the area of Eastern Ghouta since the introduction of humanitarian pauses on February 28.

Under the deal, Syrian state media said Jaish Al Islam would hand over heavy and medium-sized weapons and acknowledge the restoration of the Damascus government's control of Douma.

A Syrian military source was quoted as saying that some of the fighters were rejecting the deal.

On April 2 a first wave of evacuations begins from Douma, with more than 1,100 people, Jaish al-Islam fighters and family members, setting off to northern rebel-held Jarabulus, according to state news agency SANA.

In previous evacuations, buses leaving Douma have gathered near Wafideen or on the side of the motorway outside Damascus, and waited for hours for others to join them before setting off as a full convoy to northern Syria.

It was not immediate possible to confirm the details of the deal and there was no comment from the Army of Islam.

Russia's military says a preliminary agreement has been reached on the withdrawal of fighters of the Army of Islam rebel group from the eastern Ghouta suburbs of Syria's capital, Damascus.

If confirmed, the departure of Jaish Al Islam from Douma would mark the end of the war for eastern Ghouta, wiping out an opposition stronghold near Damascus and underlining President Bashar Al Assad's unassailable position in the war.

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It is also unclear whether all of the Army of Islam fighters have agreed to leave and how long the evacuations will take.

At least 170,000 people, including civilians and rebel fighters, have also been evacuated out of the area.

Local activists have said that over 100,000 civilians were trapped inside Douma, which suffered devastating damage.

Al Jazeera's Osama Bin Javaid, reporting from Ankara, said that after the meeting the three leaders expressed their increasing hope for peaceful solution in the Syrian crisis in light of the achievements produced by their trilateral dialogue.

Russian Federation is a key backer of Assad.

Since February 19, more than 1,600 people have been killed in attacks by the regime and its allies in eastern Ghouta, according to local civil-defence sources.

The United Nations does not have any reports on any recent fighting or air raids in Syria's Eastern Ghouta following years of "besiegement and suffering", Jan Egeland, the adviser on humanitarian issues to the UN Special Envoy for Syria, said Wednesday.

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