Militant groups controlling the Eastern Ghouta region in eastern Damascus have disrupted talks on the settlement in the area, Russia’s UN Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya said during a meeting of the UN Security Council on February 22.
According to the diplomat, “several thousand irreconcilable militants, including those linked with terrorist organizations remain” in Eastern Ghouta. These militants turned the local population of Eastern Ghouta into “hostages” and don’t allow civilians to “leave the territories they control via the check point in al-Wafideen”.
“The Russian Center for Reconciliation of the Warring Parties urged illegal groups to lay down arms and formalize their status, but they wrecked the talks yesterday, on February 21,” Nebenzya said, according to the state-run news agency TASS.
He added that the Sweden-proposed draft UN resolution, which includes an idea to impose a 30-days ceasefire in the area to allow humanitarian aid deliveries, includes “no reasonable answer” what “will be the guarantees to ensure the observance of this ceasefire.”
Earleir this week, Syrian aircraft started dropping leaflets dropped thousands of leaflets over Eastern Ghouta calling on civilians to leave the area via provide safe routes. Pro-government sources say that this indicates that a military operation in the area will be launched soon. MORE DETAILS