Executive Intelligence Review


Battle To Liberate Eastern Ghouta Almost Over

March 26, 2018 (EIRNS)—The battle for the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta is almost over. Over the past few days, the militant groups Ahrar al Sham and Faylaq al Rahman have both agreed to surrender and evacuate the two pockets that they occupied in what was left of the jihadi enclave—Faylaq in the southern pocket and Ahrar in the town of Harasta. Jaish al Islam holds the northern pocket of Douma. According to news reports, the militants who are refusing reconciliation with the government have been loading up on buses which are taking them and accompanying family members to Idlib province. Only Jaish al Islam is still holding out, though talks are reportedly underway between Jaish al Islam and the Russian military; so far, no agreement is reported. According to Al Jazeera, Jaish al Islam does not have good relations with the militant groups that dominate Idlib province. Nonetheless, the state Syrian Arab News Agency, or SANA, cites local sources reporting that Jaish al Islam militants are preparing to leave Douma.

The Russian Reconciliation Center reported, this morning, that 114,000 civilians have left the former jihadi-controlled enclave through the humanitarian corridors opened up by the Russian military, while somewhat more than 11,000 militants of both Faylaq and Ahrar have left the two southern pockets.