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Three settlements in Syria join cessation of hostilities — Russia’s Defense Ministry

December 11, 2016, 2:34 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The number of populated localities that joined the reconciliation process has increased to 1,043

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© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, December 11. /TASS/. Agreements on joining the cessation of hostilities have been inked with three more settlements in the Syrian region of Latakia in the past 24 hours, the Russian center for reconciliation of the opposing sides in Syria said in its daily news bulletin posted on the Russian defense ministry’s website on Saturday.

"The number of populated localities that joined the reconciliation process has increased to 1,043," the bulletin says. "Talks on joining the cessation of hostilities are ongoing with the field commanders of illegal armed units in the Damascus region and with groups of armed opposition in the regions of Homs, Hama, Aleppo and Quneitra."

"The number of armed groups that pledged their commitments to accepting and fulfilling the conditions of the cessation of hostilities has remained unchanged - 94," the document says.

Humanitarian aid

Special centers keep operating in the city of Aleppo, providing hot meals and daily necessities to civilians who flee the districts controlled by illegal armed groups, the center said.

Ceasefire violations

Illegal armed groups in Syria have violated the cessation of hostilities in Syria 37 times, shelling Syrian government forces and the country’s settlements, the Russian reconciliation center said.

"Over the past 24 hours, 37 episodes of shelling by illegal armed groups have been reported in the provinces of Aleppo (18), Damascus (12), Latakia (3), Homs (3) and Daraa (1)," the bulletin said. "In the Damascus province, Jaysh al-Islam armed units, reporting themselves to the opposition, opened fire with mortars and small arms on the settlements of Jobar, Kabun, Harasta and Hawsh Faddaliya. In the Latakia province, the Ahrar al-Sham units opened fire with small arms on the settlements of Rasha and Hashkhama and on the positions of government troops in the area of height 962."

Armed groups of the Free Syrian Army hurled mortars into the districts of Salaheddin and Hay al-Antari in the city of Aleppo, the bulletin says.

Outlawed in Russia, the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham terrorist group (known by its former name of Jabhat al-Nusra) shelled with multiple missile launchers, cannon artillery, mortars and small arms the districts of Amri, Art-Sabah, Ashrafiya, Binyamin, Dahya al-Assad, Jamaya Fateh, Manyan, Ramusi, Salaheddin, Hamdaniya-4, Sheikh Said, al-Makamat and the al-Assad military academy in the city of Aleppo.

In the Damascus region, terrorists shelled the settlements of Arbil, Bala al-Kadima, Hawsh Nasri, Harasta and Hawsh ash-Shalaq, the al-Wafideen camp and the sports ground in the settlement of Jobar. In the Daraa region the city of Daraa came under terrorists’ shelling.

In the Homs region, the units of Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) opened fire from tanks on the positions of government forces near heights 821 and 838 and detonated a car stuffed with explosives near height 414.

"Russia’s Aerospace Force and Syria’s Air Force have not been delivering strikes on opposition armed units that had announced the cessation of hostilities and reported their whereabouts to the Russian or U.S. reconciliation centers," the center said.

The Russian Defense Ministry declared the establishment of the reconciliation center on February 23. It is headquartered at the Hmeimim air base, Latakia province. The center was set up in line with agreements reached by Russia and the United States to facilitate the negotiations between the Syrian government and opposition and to organize humanitarian deliveries.

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