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BEIRUT, January 22 (Itar-Tass) — The arrival of two EMERCOM planes that will evacuate Russian nationals wishing to leave Syria is expected in Beirut at about 5 pm on Tuesday. According to updated reports, 88 Russian nationals, including 35 children, will be evacuated on board a Yak-42 and an Il-76 plane of the Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations.
“This is not a planned evacuation, but the return of citizens who wished to go back to Russia as a result of circumstances facing them in Syria. These are first of all people left without shelter and means of subsistance. They have turned to the Embassy in Damascus for help,” sources from the Russian Embassy to Lebanon said.
Russian nationals will arrive in Beirut on buses through the Al-Jdeida-Masnaa check point on the Syrian-Lebanese border. The bus convoy accompanied by Russian diplomats will cross the Bekaa Valley and the Dahr el-Baidar mountain pass. Luckily, the weather on Tuesday is sunny and no snowfalls are expected.
So far the convoy has not crossed the border.