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13 Aug, 2016 04:37

Al-Nusra executes militants fleeing Aleppo, kills their family members

Jihadists on their way to lay down their arms and their family members were captured and killed by Al-Nusra militants in Aleppo, as they were trying to exit the besieged city via a humanitarian corridor, the Russian MoD reports. Up to 40 people have been executed in total.

“In the Karyat al-Ansari quarter of Eastern Aleppo, Jabhat al-Nusra terrorists have executed two insurgents and members of their families,”reads the Bulletin of the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria. The militants sought to enter the area held by the Syrian Army through one of the humanitarian getaways established for this end by Moscow and Damascus. 

“In total, terrorists have executed 40 people,” the report says.

RT’s Paula Slier reported from Aleppo that “the humanitarian situation has worsened since the start of this month. There is intense fighting, particularly in eastern districts, where Syrian soldiers, assisted by local militia, have surrounded large groups of militants.”

Seven escape routes for civilians and militants who want to give in to the Syrian army, have been set up in the city “around the clock,” chief of the main operations department of the Russian General Staff, Sergey Rudskoy, said in a briefing Wednesday.

READ MORE: Syrian Army & Hezbollah launch counter-offensive in south Aleppo (VIDEO)

Moreover, a special corridor was opened for armed militants near the Castello Road in eastern Aleppo. “A number” of groups bearing arms have already fled the areas held by terrorists via this route, Rudskoy has confirmed. 

All insurgents who voluntary lay down their weapons and surrender are eligible to the amnesty, announced by Syrian President Bashar Assad at the start of the large-scale humanitarian operation in Aleppo on July 28.  Scores of militants, both with and without weapons, have turned themselves over since the start of the effort.

Al-Nusra and Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) fighters have been hampering the joint efforts by Russia and Syria to strip their units of the “human shield” with brutal punishments for civilians.

Last week, the Center reported that three civilians were murdered by militants in the Karm al-Qasr quarter of Aleppo as they were trying to reunite with their relatives living on government-controlled territory.

"Terrorists are obstructing the movement of people along humanitarian corridors. All approaches to these are being mined and are shelled with artillery,” it said in a statement.

Aleppo came under heavy fire on Friday, as jihadists shelled al-Asad Military Academy, the Kastello trade center, a cement plant, residential quarters of Hai al-Ansari and al-Khalidiyah, an airport and a market.

To facilitate the passage of civilians trapped in the city, three-hour ceasefires lasting from 10am to 1pm local time have been in effect since August 11. The pauses in fighting allow for the safe delivery of humanitarian aid to the most stricken parts of the city.

On Thursday, some 1,000 tons in food supplies, including fresh vegetables and fruit, carried by a 40-truck convoy arrived in Aleppo, Abdullah al-Gharbi, Syria’s minister of internal trade and consumer protection told Syrian news agency SANA. In total, the supplies delivered to the city will last two months, he noted. The products will be distributed at reduced prices.

Since the establishing of the corridors, over “5 tons of food, basic necessities, medicine as well as 93 tons of water” were delivered to the embattled city, Rudskoy said Wednesday.

The US-Russia brokered ceasefire regime in Syria has been in effect since February 27. It does not apply to terrorist groups including IS and Al-Nusra. So far 69 armed groups declared they will adhere to the truce while the number of reconciliation agreements signed have increased to 388.