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‘Regime of calm’ extended around Damascus: Syrian army

The Syrian army says a “regime of calm” around the capital, Damascus, has been extended for another 48 hours.

The Syrian military made the announcement in a statement quoted by state television on Monday. It made no mention of a 72-hour lull in fighting in the north of coastal Latakia Province.

On Sunday, the Syrian Armed Forces Command said in a statement it had extended a 24-hour lull in fighting in the capital which had been announced on Friday. The regime of silence affected the capital and the Eastern Ghouta region on its outskirts.

Meanwhile, head of the Russian Center for reconciliation of the opposing sides in Syria, Lt. Gen. Sergei Kuralenko said Monday that talks were underway on declaring a “regime of calm” in Syria’s Aleppo Province.

“Negotiations on introducing a ‘regime of calm’ in Aleppo Province continue,” he said, as quoted by Russia’s Interfax.

Syria’s offensive in Aleppo is based on a UN Security Council resolution which accepts Syria’s right to fighting terrorists.

Syria’s official SANA news agency said on Saturday that at least 25 people were killed in militant rocket attacks on the two residential neighborhoods of Neel and Hamadaniyeh.

The Takfiri Daesh militants and al-Nusra Front are excluded from a “cessation of the hostilities” agreement reached in late February as an attempt for facilitating the peace talks.

The truce, which is sponsored by the United States and Russia, is still officially in place in many parts of Syria despite surging violence in Aleppo, which has been a flashpoint over the past weeks.

Since March 2011, the United States and its regional allies, in particular Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, have been conducting a proxy war against Syria.

According to a February report by the Syrian Center for Policy Research, the conflict has claimed the lives of over 470,000 people, injured 1.9 million others, and displaced nearly half of the pre-war population of about 23 million within or beyond Syria’s borders.

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