Friday 16 September, 2016 Update: Syrian News

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The ceasefire brokered by the United States and Russia in Syria was not expected to be permanent. But it was expected to last longer than four or five days. Right now, the ceasefire is edging precariously close to breaking. Fighting has broken out east of Damascus. Rebel factions claim government forces are driving into their territory around Jobar. The Syrian government accuse the rebels of trying to push west into the capital city from Jobar and that this activity is what prompted the response. Both sides claim that the actions of the other is a violation of the ceasefire agreement.  Jobar is not the only area where hostilities have erupted since the cease-fire took effect. SANA, the Syrian state media claims there were over 20 violations in Aleppo alone, including rebel rocket fire that damaged a church in the government held section of the city.

Meanwhile, in Aleppo relief workers are awaiting a large delivery of UN aid from Turkey. The delivery has crossed the border and is expected to arrive in the besieged area of east Aleppo sometime today. The aid has been sitting in Turkey since the beginning of the week and has not moved until now because of disagreements between the opposing sides in Syria and concerns about the safety of the route between the border and Aleppo. A number of NGOs are also waiting to deliver foodstuffs, medical supplies and other desperately needed materials to Aleppo. The terms of the ceasefire call for humanitarian access to the area, but unless the warring parties can guarantee safe passage, little aid is expected to arrive in the besieged areas in and around Aleppo.

 

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