Middle east

Over 400 Militants Lay Down Arms in Syria’s Daraa After Truce With Authorities – Source

DAMASCUS (Sputnik) – A group of 430 militants have laid down their arms in Syria’s southern Daraa province after agreeing to a truce with government forces, a source in the Syrian security forces told Sputnik on Monday.

The new truce agreement between the armed groups and the authorities was signed on Sunday with the mediation of Russia.

“430 militants and 24 soldiers who had violated the service order in Daraa al-Balad [central neighborhood of Daraa] agreed to regulate their status and handed over 105 pieces of weapons at a reconciliation center in Daraa al-Balad,” the source said.

The militants began to arrive at the reconciliation center from 10:00 local time (07:00 GMT), the deadline set by the Syrian authorities for militias to accept the ceasefire conditions. Otherwise, the Syrian army would resume military operations.

On August 14, the Syrian authorities and militants reached a truce agreement. The militants were obliged to hand over their weapons, with the government forces due to install checkpoints in nine Daraa al-Balad districts. All militants who refused to lay down weapons were to leave the province by buses provided by the authorities.

Last week, illegal armed groups in Daraa violated the agreement, refusing to hand over heavy weapons after the authorities provided them with 40 buses to depart for the north of Syria or Jordan.

Some 290 militants had agreed to lay down weapons and regulate their social status before the truce violation. On August 31, militants attacked state institutions and troops in Daraa, killing four soldiers and wounding eight more.

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