DAMASCUS, SYRIA (3:35 P.M.) – Up to 20 buses entered two besieged towns of Fouaa and Kafraya in rural Idlib to begin an evacuation agreement concluded earlier between the Syrian Army and Nusra jihadi group.

The buses will transport up to 1200 people as the first batch to government-held areas in northern Syria. In exchange, jihadi rebels in Yarmouk Refugee Camp in southern Damascus shall hand over their positions to the Syrian Army and eventually be evacuated to the country’s north.

The deal was reached following fierce battles in besieged Yarmouk Camp as part of a wider offensive launched by the government troops to reclaim all insurgent-controlled districts in southern Damascus.

Thousands of civilians have been trapped inside the two Shia towns since the jihadi groups completely besieged them in 2015 after capturing the northern Syrian city of Idlib.

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