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Syrian rebels set to leave Wadi Barada for Idlib

20 buses in Deir Qanoon were seen ready to move fighters and their relatives

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Syrian armed opposition fighters have begun preparation to leave with their relatives Wadi Barada and head to northern Syria, as part of an agreement between militant factions and regime forces.

Video footage obtained by Reuters shows about 20 buses in Deir Qanoon ready to move the fighters and their relatives.

The regime's army has declared control on rebel-held villages in the Barada River valley near Damascus, which is a water pumping station that supplies most of the capital, after fighting lasted more than a month between rebels and the Syrian army.

Under a deal with the authorities, rebels can choose to stay in the area but hand over their weapons, or leave to the northern province of Idlib, last major bastion of the armed opposition.

Around 5.5 million people in Damascus and its suburbs have been without water since fighting intensified in the Wadi Barada area in late December.

Syrian government soldiers drink from a water pumping station in the village of Ain al-Fija in the Wadi Barada valley near Damascus. (Reuters)
Syrian government soldiers drink from a water pumping station in the village of Ain al-Fija in the Wadi Barada valley near Damascus. (Reuters)
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