Reconciliation Begins in the Damascus Suburb of Al-Qudsiyah
It took almost three years, but the Islamist rebels and the National Defense Forces (NDF) have finally agreed to implement a permanent ceasefire in the Damascus suburb of Al-Qudsiyah, which is expected to take effect next week.
According to a military source in Damascus, the Syrian Reconciliation Committee – led by Dr. Ali Haidar – facilitated the agreement between the National Defense Forces and Free Syrian Army (FSA) inside Al-Qudsiyah; however, it was often prolonged due to the FSA’s insistence to be transferred to the Dara’a Governorate.
The National Defense Forces’ leadership agreed to lift the siege on Al-Qudsiyah after the rebel leadership accepted the terms of the ceasefire, which included the surrender of all heavy weaponry to the civilian-led militiamen and the reopening of streets to allow for residents to return home.
The details of the ceasefire agreement are as followed:
The remaining rebel combatants inside Al-Qudisiyah will be transported to either Lebanon or the Dara’a Governorate; it will be their choice.
The rebel combatants will immediately reopen the streets they control and allow for the Syrian Red Crescent to bring in humanitarian aid to the civilians still inside this suburb.
All rebel combatants must turn in their heavy weaponry – they will be allowed to carry assault rifles and hand guns.
Failure to comply with any of these terms will result in the termination of this agreement
As of Tuesday, the ceasefire has been implemented; if successful, thousands of displaced residents will be able to return home.