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Nine injured as militants shell Damascus — Russian reconciliation center

On Thursday, the ninth humanitarian pause was announced in the area

MOSCOW, March 9. /TASS/. Nine people were injured when militants launched eight mortar rounds at residential districts of Damascus, the head of the Russian Center for reconciliation of the opposing sides in Syria Maj. Gen. Yuri Yevtushenko said on Thursday.

"The situation in Eastern Ghouta remains tense. Yesterday, militants once again shelled residential districts of Damascus and its outskirts. Eight mortar rounds were fired, nine people were injured. There is also damage on the ground," he said.

At the same time, the Russian reconciliation center continues its humanitarian operation in Eastern Ghouta despite complicated security situation.

On Thursday, the ninth humanitarian pause was announced in the area.

"The humanitarian corridor was opened both for peaceful residents of Eastern Ghouta and militants with their family members. Safety, transport and security guard are guaranteed for them along the entire route," he said.

According to the Russian official, the ceasefire is observed in general throughout the country.

Militants still control 80 square kilometers in Eastern Ghouta or about one-third of this area located along the Damascus-Homs highway. Humanitarian pauses in the region are being declared at Russia’s initiative daily since February 27 to facilitate civilians’ evacuation from the districts controlled by armed gangs. They are in effect from 09:00 (10:00 Moscow time) to 14:00 (15:00 Moscow time) local time.

For the first few days, the humanitarian pauses were disrupted by terrorists, who shelled the humanitarian corridor, through which civilians were supposed to leave the area.