Syrian Army discovers tunnel network, underground hospitals in liberated E. Ghouta

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

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

The rebels were headed to Jarablus, a town in northern Syria where control of the territory is shared between Syrian rebels and Turkish forces.

The Saudi-backed group, which has deep roots in the region, has held firm in recent weeks as virtually all the other insurgents of eastern Ghouta have reached deals to relocate to the rebel-held north, leaving Douma as the only remaining rebel holdout.

A council member of Douma in Eastern Ghouta has said reports of a deal to surrender the opposition-controlled town to the Syrian government are not true.

A second batch of Jaish al-Islam terrorists and their families left Douma city in Eastern Ghouta in Damascus countryside by buses to Jarablos area in a step to announce the city free from terrorism.

In September, the army evacuates some 300 Daraya inhabitants from neighbouring rebel-held Moadimayet al-Sham, where they had taken refuge three years earlier.

The evacuation of the rebels and their families from Douma comes a day after a deal was reached between the Islam Army militants and the Syrian army under the mediation of Russian Federation. The humanitarian operation to provide help to the Eastern Ghouta population will end in several days, said Colonel General Sergei Rudskoy, head of the Main Operations Directorate of the Russian General Staff, on Wednesday.

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Militants left the area after Russian-brokered agreements on daily humanitarian ceasefires and deals made between militants and Syrian government forces.

"Our position is consistent and clear", he said.

Four major rebel groups were now positioned inside Eastern Ghouta, namely the Islam Army, Failaq al-Rahman, Ahrar al-Sham, and the Levant Liberation Committee, known as the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front. On Tuesday an opposition source said talks were continuing with Damascus, even as state media reported the departure of another group of fighters from eastern Ghouta.

The government is waiting for the rebels to leave the besieged town of Douma, just east of Damascus, before it can say it has full control of the area, after seven years of revolt. Government forces extended their control over those areas over the course of a five-week offensive that killed at least 1,600 civilians and displaced tens of thousands more, according to the Observatory, an opposition-linked group that monitors both sides of the conflict.

According to United Nations officials, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed in the conflict to date.

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