Syrian evacuations postponed after 126 killed


The evacuation of more than 3,000 Syrians that was scheduled to take place on Sunday from four areas as part of a population transfer has been postponed, a day after a deadly blast that killed more than 120 people.

The reasons for the delay were not immediately clear. It came as shells fired by the Islamic State group on government-held parts of the eastern city of Deir el-Zour wounded two members of a Russian media delegation visiting the area, according to state-run Syrian news agency SANA.

Russia is a main backer of Syrian President Bashar Assad and Russian journalists enjoy wide access in government-held parts of the country.

The evacuation of more than 3,000 Syrians that was scheduled to take place on Sunday from four areas as part of a population transfer has been postponed, a day after a deadly blast that killed more than 120 people.

The reasons for the delay were not immediately clear. It came as shells fired by the Islamic State group on government-held parts of the eastern city of Deir el-Zour wounded two members of a Russian media delegation visiting the area, according to state-run Syrian news agency SANA.

Russia is a main backer of Syrian President Bashar Assad and Russian journalists enjoy wide access in government-held parts of the country.

It was not immediately clear if the evacuees feared attacks similar to Saturday’s bombing.

Abdurrahman said Saturday’s blast -which hit an area where thousands of pro-government evacuees had been waiting for hours – killed 126. He said the dead included 109 people from Foua and Kfarya, among them 80 children and 13 women.

No one has claimed the attack, but both the Islamic State group and the al-Qaeda-affiliated Fatah al-Sham Front have targeted civilians in government areas in the past.

Source: sbs.com.au

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