Homs: Rebels, Civil Society Meet With Russia to Demand New Safe Zone Deal

Syria's armed and civilian opposition hope to overturn the de-escalation zones agreement signed in Cairo last month, Zaman al-Wasl writes

A committee formed by rebel factions and civil society groups in northern Homs met with the Russian military on Tuesday as part of a cease-fire deal reached last week. Representatives from both sides are seeking to resolve the file of detainees and the forcibly disappeared, as well the entry of food and aid into the besieged region.

In a statement posted online, the committee said that residents and rebels are seeking a unified platform to reach a new deal to substitute the agreement signed in Cairo around the three Russian-proposed de-escalation zones in the Eastern Ghouta, southern Syria, and northern Homs.

Meanwhile, rebels in northern Homs denied the entry of a Russian aid convoy on Monday, saying that the release of detainees is the first priority.

The same day, Russian military police were deployed in the northern countryside, setting up two checkpoints and three observation points. The main Russian checkpoint sits at the Dar al-Kabira crossing, the only gateway to northern Homs, a local reporter said.

The truce that began Thursday and the Russian deployment are the first stages of the cease-fire plan reached under an agreement between Russia, Iran and Turkey in May.

This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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