Over 20 blasts in Damascus as ‘terrorists shell residential areas’ – Russian military
The Syria truce coordinating center has detected shelling of residential areas in Damascus carried out by terror groups, said Sergey Kuralenko, the head of the center launched by Moscow at Khmeimim airbase earlier in the week.
Over 20 blasts were registered earlier Saturday over a period of five hours, Kuralenko said.
The information on the shelling was immediately passed to the US coordination center in Amman, the military said, RIA Novosti reported.
There were no immediate reports of any casualties, according to SANA news agency.
The Syrian capital came under shelling just a few hours after a nationwide ceasefire was introduced. The deal on “cessation of hostilities” came into effect at midnight Damascus time. Outlined by the US and Russia, it was unanimously adopted by the United Nations Security Council earlier Friday and obliged all parties involved in the conflict to abide by it.
The exceptions are Islamic State group (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), Al-Nusra, and other terrorist organizations as designated by the UN Security Council.
The news of the cessation in hostilities was met with mixed reactions in the Syrian capital.
“Do you think people are happy to see blood, devastation and ruins? People should have a rest and get back to normal life,” a woman told RT.
“It’s impossible to introduce a ceasefire. Terrorists and their supporters are going to use this time to obtain more weapons, and then the battles with the Syrian army will go on,” a man said.
During their Saturday phone call, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry welcomed the ceasefire and agreed on more intensive military cooperation between the two countries on regular basis.
Syria’s warring parties are expected to sit down to negotiating table again on March 7. However, the peace talks will be canceled if hostilities go on, UN Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura said.