Moscow has stated that the Operation to free Eastern Ghouta a suburb surrounding the capital city of Damascus is just nearing its final hours as most of the areas are now under the control of Syrian regime forces and the remaining rebels being holed up in Douma after they abandoned the rest of the area.
The faction of rebels which remains is Jaish al-Islam and it is not giving up on Douma, but is in continuous negotiations with Russia over its fate. Many rebels have accepted Russian deals which offered them and their families safe passage to other rebel-held areas of Syria on government-owned buses. However, many civilians stayed back in the area accepting rule of the government while many thousands fled the war zone towards the front lines.
The victory of Eastern Ghouta after the bloodiest battle in last 8 years on Syrian soil have handed the worst defeat to the rebels since they lost Aleppo. The spokesperson of Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova has officially stated that the Operation in Eastern Ghouta has nearly ended and gave no details about the on-going negotiations with the rebels. Eastern Ghouta had been the most densely populated rebel stronghold till last month in close proximity to the capital. The capture has given Assad a vital edge in the whole war.
There has been no resumption of bombardment in Douma although artillery fire is seen. The government forces had split the suburb into three parts and made the rebels surrender and gave them along with their families a safe passage to other rebel-held areas with light weapons. Nearly 30,000 people have been taken to other parts on daily convoys of buses. President Assad has termed the operation as indispensible to put an end to the rule of Islamist militants over the civilians.