Militant groups operating in Eastern Ghouta have disrupted the first five-hour ceasefire pause in the region and have used it to launch an offensive against governmetn forces, the Russian Center for Reconciliation (RCR) said on February 27.
“During the humanitarian pause, militants of the armed groups continued to attack the positions of government forces in the vicinity of the settlements of Khazram and Nawabiya, and after 13.00 they started an offensive and on other destinations. These actions were accompanied by intense artillery fire and fire from small arms, ” the RCR’s head, Maj. Gen. Yuri Yevtushenko told media.
“The militants do not let anyone out,” he said emphasizing that the military situation on the ground is “compliacted”.
According to Maj. Gen. Yevtushenko, militants had been conducting shelling about every 30 minutes during the humanitarian pause. He called on militant groups to observe the ceasefire and do not prevent people from leaving to safe areas.
Daily humanitarian pauses in Eastern Ghouta were announced by the Russian Defense Ministry on February 26. The first pause took place on February 27. The goal of the effort is to allow as much civilians as possible to evacuate from the combat area.
Last week, the Syrian Arab Army and its allies launched a military operation against militants operating in Eastern Ghouta.
Photos of a humanitarian corridor opened by government forces for civilians in Eastern Ghouta: