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Syrian army takes control of another 5 districts in eastern Aleppo — ministry

December 06, 2016, 20:13 UTC+3

A total of 35 neighborhoods earlier controlled by gunmen have been liberated, according to the Russian Defense Ministry

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© AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

HMEYMIM /Syria/, December 6. /TASS/. The Syrian army has established control over five more neighborhoods in the eastern part of Aleppo by Tuesday evening, more than 300 residents have moved to safe areas, the Russian Center for reconciliation of the warring parties in Syria reported.

"By the evening of December 6, the Syrian army has established full control over five more neighborhoods in eastern Aleppo," the center said. "Thus, a total of 35 neighborhoods earlier controlled by gunmen have been liberated."

According to the Russian Reconciliation Center, a dominant hill with a group of hospital buildings has been liberated by the Syrian troops during fierce fighting in Balalat neighborhood. The gunmen reequipped this hospital into a large command post more than a year ago, with artillery positions, a large ammunition depot and shops for the production of improvised rockets. From the territory of that hospital the militants carried out full fire control of two nearby key highways and shelled residential areas in the western part of Aleppo.

The Russian Reconciliation center also noted that, over the past 24 hours, 302 civilians have moved to Aleppo's safe areas from the eastern districts, while 1,100 civilians returned to their apartments in the city’s eastern neighborhoods liberated from militants. "All of them are provided with hot meals, medical care, if necessary, foodstuffs and warm clothes by the Russian Center," the report said.

Ten gunmen who have surrendered over the past 24 hours have been granted amnesty in accordance with the Syrian president’s decision.

In mid-November, the Syrian government troops launched an operation to liberate the eastern districts of Aleppo (360 kilometers of Damascus) controlled by militants. According to the UN, about 270,000 people live there. Military experts in Damascus earlier pointed out that the battle of Aleppo had reached a turning point. The Syrian army has gained control over 65% of the city’s territory, which was seized by gunmen during their invasion in 2012.

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