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Syrian rebels begin evacuating Homs enclave of al-Wair

Syrian rebels
Syrian rebels and their families are leaving their last remaining enclave in Homs, a city once dubbed "the capital of the revolution", BBC reported on Saturday.

Buses have begun transporting people out of al-Wair district, under a Russian-backed evacuation deal.




The opposition Homs Media Centre says up to 15,000 people could leave in the coming weeks, Reuters news agency reports.

The evacuation is part of a deal reached between community leaders and the government in December 2015. Hundreds of rebels have previously left al-Wair under its terms, but implementation of the agreement had stalled in recent months.

Evacuees will be bussed out of Homs to Jarablus, an area in northern Syria held by rebels backed by Turkey, according to UK-based group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The Syrian government says such "reconciliation" deals, which have been agreed in several rebel-held areas, are key to ending the six-year civil war. 

Opposition fighters say that they have been coerced into such agreements by brutal sieges and bombardments.
Homs became a key battleground of the Syrian uprising after residents embraced the call to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad in 2011 and drove security forces out of much of the city the following year.
Last Modified: Saturday، 18 March 2017 05:40 PM
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