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Terrorists Agree to Hand Over Khan Al-Sheih

29 November 2016 10:55

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Fatah al-Sham Front (previously known as the al-Nusra Front) and Ahrar al-Sham terrorist groups finally agreed to hand over the strategic town of Khan al-Sheih to the Syrian army after four years of battle.

“The terrorists have started boarding the buses in Khan al-Sheih as they prepare to be transported to Idlib province by the government,” the Arab media quoted an informed source as saying.

The source noted that the militants initially requested to be transferred to Dara’a province before surrendering the town; however, the Syrian Army’s High Command declined the request because it would allow them continue their war in Southern Syria.

Once the terms were accepted by both sides, the date for the terrorists’ transfer to Idlib was set for November 27th, but this was later postponed to November 28th due to some problems with Fatah Al-Sham members that refused to surrender.

Khan Al-Sheih is Fatah Al-Sham’s last stronghold in the Western Ghouta region of rural Damascus; its loss will free up thousands of soldiers from the Syrian Army.

On Sunday, a security source said that the Syrian army reopened all routes leading to Khan al-Sheih to take the first step in the implementation of the peace plan with the militant groups.

The source said that the first paragraph of the plan includes the terrorists’ surrender of heavy, semi-heavy and light weapons to the army and the start of their relocation to Idlib on Monday.

According to the source, the Syrian army has agreed to grant amnesty to those militants who want to remain in the region but those who want to leave Khan al-Sheih should surrender all their weapons, equipment, ammunition, maps of their tunnels and planted mines to the army first.

Meantime, local sources reported that a number of buses have been sent to the nearby areas of Khan al-Sheih.

The Syrian Army’s devastating attacks and advances in Western Ghouta forced the terrorist groups in Khan al-Sheih region to ask the government forces for a revival of the negotiations after they pushed the last round of peace talks into failure.

As ceasefire talks was in final stages to give the terrorist groups an opportunity to surrender in return for amnesty or relocate to Idlib province similar to other militant groups in Damascus province, the militants, mainly from the Al-Nusra Front, launched attacks to lift the army siege of Khan al-Sheih town irrespective of the truce and pushed the talks into failure.

After repelling terrorists’ large-scale attacks to lift the army siege in the town of Khan al-Sheih that pushed the peace talks into failure, the government forces intensified their attacks on militants’ defense lines in and outside the town and took full control of more regions.

The terrorists were forced to accept the terms of a truce after they lost over 100 fighters in the Syrian army’s recent anti-terrorism operations in Khan al-Sheih that ended up in the army’s tightening siege of the town.

“The recent victories of the army men in the al-Soqour region have compelled the militants to call on the government forces to declare their consent to the entire terms of the neglected agreement for leaving the region,” several dissident sources said through their social media pages.

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