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Starved Syrians flee besieged Damascus suburb


Syria

Starved Syrians flee besieged Damascus suburb

More than 1,500 Syrians have been allowed to leave the besieged Damascus suburb of Moadamiyeh.

The town had been blockaded by state forces since March in an attempt to flush out rebel fighters – leaving residents cut off from food and supplies for months.

The evacuation was the result of rare coordination between Syrian government forces and their opponents.

Mother Faida Lahham, a nun who helped organise the evacuation, explained: “The opposition and even the security services, the army, everybody has contributed with the best of itself [themselves] to make this initiative a success.”

It was the third such evacuation of Moadamiyeh, which opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad say has been 90 percent destroyed by the civil war.

A Syrian government official said the operation would leave no civilians in the town, but the opposition claimed that thousands were still facing starvation and death there.

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