ASIA/SYRIA - Agreement army- rebels: civilians evacuated from Homs

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Homs (Agenzia Fides) - More than 60 civilians, mostly Christians, have left the bombed city of Homs in the last 48 hours. As reported by the Greek Syrian-Orthodox priest Fr. Maximos Al-Jamal, the evacuation of civilians was possible thanks to the bilateral agreement between the government forces besieging the city, and the factions of the armed revolutionaries. Mediation, report sources of Fides, was laboriously conducted by members of the Committee for Reconciliation "Mussalaha". Some of the displaced went to Damascus, others to the so-called "Valley of the Christians", yet others chose to go to Lebanon. According to Fides sources, there are still at least 100 civilians trapped in the Christian districts of Bustan al-Diwan and al-Hamidiyah, in the old city of Homs, and currently negotiations are continuing in order to release all of them. Members of the Committee "Mussalaha", work tirelessly and feverishly, note sources of Fides, with only the basic purpose of "saving lives".
The initiative "Mussalaha", which is gaining ground, despite the civil war, in different areas of Syria, is accused by some to being "an expression of the regime" or a "propaganda tool". Committee members reject these accusations, noting that the initiative came "from below", from civil society, it is interreligious, transparent and independent. It intends to dialogue with the parties, so even with the government, but the interest it seeks is only the salvation of human lives, reconciliation, unity and brotherhood of the Syrian people. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 12/7/2012)