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Syria evacuations resume

RASHIDIN (Syria)

Hundreds of Syrian civilians who have been under crippling siege left their homes on Wednesday as evacuations resumed after a weekend bombing killed dozens, as bomb killed six people and wounded more than 30 in Aleppo on Wednesday, state television reported.

A large convoy of buses from the government-held towns of Fuaa and Kafraya reached the edge of the rebel-held transit point of Rashidin outside second city Aleppo, a  correspondent said.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed the hard-won evacuation deal was back under way.

“The process has resumed with 3,000 people leaving Fuaa and Kafraya at dawn and nearly 300 leaving Zabadani and two other rebel-held areas,” the head of the Britain-based monitoring group, Rami Abdel Rahman, said.

Rashidin was the scene of Saturday’s deadly car bombing. At least 109 of the 126 dead were evacuees, among them 68 children. The rest were aid workers and rebels guarding the convoy.

Dozens of wounded were taken to hospitals in nearby rebel-held territory, while others were taken to Aleppo, which government forces regained full control of late last year.

Security was tightened up for Wednesday’s departures. Several dozen armed rebel fighters stood guard over the marshalling area where the buses were parked.

Meanwhile, a bomb killed six people and wounded more than 30 in Aleppo on Wednesday, state television reported.

The blast hit the southwestern neighbourhood of Salaheddin, which was once on the front line between rebels and government forces before the army retook full control of the city in December.

State television did not specify whether the explosion was the result of an attack or unexploded ordnance left over from the four and a half years of fighting.

Agencies