Quotes: MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Homs falls to Assad regime  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 09/05/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!

(MENAFN - Arab News) Homs syria: the evacuation of rebel-held parts of homs city began wednesday under an unprecedented deal which hands back control to the government less than a month before syria’s presidential election.

after nearly two years of government siege civilians and rebel forces began to leave the old city and surrounding areas on buses taking them to opposition territory in northern homs province.

their departure saves both sides the prospect of a drawn-out potentially devastating battle and it allows rebels to leave with some of their weaponry.

the deal effectively turns over the city once dubbed the “capital of the revolution” to government control ahead of a june 3 election expected to return president bashar assad to office.

the evacuation began at around 10 a.m. (0700gmt) with three buses carrying civilians and fighters some of them wounded departing the devastated old city a rebel negotiator told afp.

a video posted online by opposition activists showed a group of fighters some with their faces covered with black or white scarves walking in a line toward green buses.

they carried backpacks and light weapons as they boarded the buses under the gaze of regime police and accompanied by a white un car.

around an hour after the operation began negotiator abul hareth al-khalidi said a first bus had arrived in the north of the province.

and by early afternoon the syrian observatory for human rights said 222 people had left out of approximately 1200 believed to be in the old city.

the evacuees are being transferred to the rebel-held town of dar al-kebira 20 kilometers (12 miles) from homs.

wael an activist in the northern homs province village of termaaleh told afp he had received some of the evacuees who were emotional.

“i asked one of my friends who is now resting in my house and he said to me that he felt hungry and in pain and tearful over leaving homs” he said.

“he said he felt his soul being pulled out of his body as he left homs.”

the deal between the regime and rebels mediated by iran’s ambassador to syria was reached as part of an exchange for a number of hostages being held by opposition fighters in the northern city of aleppo.

and under the agreement fighters will also allow aid into two shiite majority towns in aleppo province nubol and zahraa where some 45000 people are under rebel siege.

the observatory said by early afternoon aid had started to reach the two towns and that an unspecified number of released hostages had arrived in the regime-held coastal city of latakia.

once the homs operation is complete the evacuated areas are to be turned over to the government which is expected to send in forces to sweep for mines and explosives.

the regime will then have control of all but one major area of homs city.

while the area being reclaimed by the government is relatively small it retains huge symbolic importance for the opposition.

at the start of syria’s uprising in march 2011 homs came to be known as the “capital of the revolution” because of its massive anti-regime protests.

and after the opposition took up arms in response to a brutal government crackdown the city gained iconic status among the opposition for resisting multiple offensives.

during a nearly two-year government blockade which left around 3000 people trapped food and medical supplies dwindled.

in february a un-red crescent operation successfully evacuated around 1400 people and delivered limited aid to the besieged areas.

but hundreds of fighters and wounded people unable to make it to evacuation points were left behind and government forces launched a fresh assault last month.

many of those evacuated in february moved to the rebel-held waer district which will be the only remaining opposition area left in homs city after the old city operation.

negotiations are underway for a similar deal to be implemented in waer according to government and opposition officials.


Arab News

  MENA News Headlines
 Oct 9 2015 - Qatar- QSE falls 34 points, bullish phase continuesGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Qatar Stock Exchange failed to surpass the 11,800 mark as its key index lost 34 points, after being in a bullish phase for the last three consecutive sessions.Consumer goods, ...

 Oct 9 2015 - Saudi said to order spend curbs amid oil price slumpGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Saudi Arabia is ordering a series of cost-cutting measures as the slide in oil prices weighs on the kingdom's budget, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.The ...

 Oct 9 2015 - KSA- SABB Q3 profit rises 7.7% to $304mnGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Saudi British Bank (SABB), the kingdom's fifth-largest bank by assets, posted a 7.7% rise in third-quarter net profit yesterday, in line with analyst forecasts. The bank, an ...

 Oct 9 2015 - Qatar wealth fund said interested in Glencore agriculture unit saleGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) The sovereign wealth fund of Qatar has joined investors expressing an interest in buying a minority stake in Glencore's agriculture business, according to three people familiar ...

 Oct 9 2015 - Almost 300 Europe-bound migrants arrested in LibyaGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Libyan authorities said almost 300 migrants, a third of them from Senegal, were arrested Thursday as they prepared to board boats for the Mediterranean crossing to Europe."After ...

 Oct 9 2015 - Netanyahu moves to lower tensions over holy siteGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has banned Israeli cabinet ministers and legislators from visiting a sensitive Jerusalem holy site where rising tensions have spilled over into ...

 Oct 9 2015 - France carries out fresh strikes against IS in SyriaGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) France said on Friday it had carried out a second wave of strikes overnight on Islamic State targets in Syria and accused Russia of failing to target the group."Two Rafale jets ...

 Oct 9 2015 - UN envoy proposes Libya unity governmentGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) UN envoy Bernardino Leon proposed a Libyan unity government on Friday aimed at ending years of conflict, but the plan was quickly dismissed by members of the country's two rival ...

 Oct 9 2015 - Tunisian dialogue mediators win Nobel Peace PrizeGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Tunisia's National Dialogue Quartet won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for building democracy in the country after the 2011 revolution which unleashed the Arab Spring.The award ...

 Oct 9 2015 - Four Arabs stabbed in southern Israel, Jewish suspect heldGulf Times
(MENAFN - Gulf Times) Four Arabs were stabbed in a town in southern Israel on Friday and a Jewish suspect was arrested, police said. The attacks follow a surge in knife violence by Palestinians ...




Click to Apply


Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices


Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks

Saudi Arabia 

Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor


Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters

© 2014 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help