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ISIS accepts withdrawal from southern Damascus - Observatory

ISIS militants battled Syrian rebel forces in a Damascus neighbourhood. (File photo: Reuters)

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights stated that ISIS organization announced through the negotiating intermediaries, that they will comply with terms of agreement which was reached between them and Russian representatives and the Syrian regime to depart from the south of Damascus.

The agreement came after intensive artillery and missile strikes, accompanied by violent clashes between the regime forces and ISIS’s loyal supporters.

The clashes took place within the perimeter of Yarmouk camp in the southern part of the capital, in an attempt by the regime forces to pressure the organization to adhere to the agreement after delaying its implementation.

Russian media sources announced an agreement on a cease-fire between the regime and armed opposition factions in Yilda, Babila and Beit Sahm, southeast of Damascus.

As for the towns of Kalamoun, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that an agreement between the Russians and ISIS fighters mentions a cease-fire and the starting of the handover of weapons.

The agreement states also that the Russian side would organize the exit process of those who reject the agreement to head to their destination and to search convoys.

Pentagon warns of ISIS recovery in regime areas of Syria

The US military has seen ISIS group "resurge" in some parts of Syria under government control, a US defense official said  on Tuesday.

Colonel Ryan Dillon, a spokesman for the US-led coalition fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq, said the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and its ally Russia have not always been able to hold the terrain recaptured from ISIS.

"As we look at ISIS in areas where we are not operating, where we are not supporting our partners on the ground, there has been ISIS elements who have been able to come back and take territory (including in) some of the neighborhoods in southern Damascus," Dillon said.

"We've seen ISIS start to resurge in areas west of the Euphrates River," he added.

The US military is closely watching ISIS in Syria and Iraq, where the militants have lost 98 percent of the land they once held, according to the Pentagon.

Progress however has ground to a halt in recent weeks in areas where the US-led coalition is fighting ISIS through the Syrian Democratic Forces, a local proxy group, due to Turkish military action in the north.

Ankara in January launched a bloody operation around Afrin to push Kurdish fighters out of the city.

Many of the Kurdish fighters that had been engaged in anti-ISIS operations have quit that fight to support comrades in Afrin.

Dillon said there had been no significant gains against ISIS since the Kurdish members of the SDF had left.

(With AFP)
 

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Last Update: Friday, 20 April 2018 KSA 19:00 - GMT 16:00
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