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Red Cross delivers aid to militant-held Eastern Ghouta

A 15-truck aid convoy has successfully delivered its load to the militant-held Eastern Ghouta area of Damascus, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Friday. It then crossed into the government-controlled areas through the al-Wafideen checkpoint. The convoy has been scheduled to reach the area on Thursday but was delayed due to a surge in shelling by the militants. Some two hours after the end of the humanitarian pause and delivery of aid, the al-Wafideen checkpoint was raked by the militants with anti-aircraft guns, according to the spokesman for the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria, Major General Vladimir Zolotukhin. The militants are still preventing the civilians from leaving the besieged areas, opening fire on people trying to flee through the humanitarian corridors and shelling residential areas of Damascus, the official said.