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Syrian army begins withdrawal of forces from city of Daraa

Arab World Materials 5 May 2011 13:12 (UTC +04:00)
The Syrian army began withdrawing its forces from the southern city of Daraa on Thursday after days of building up its presence there, according to official state news reports.
Syrian army begins withdrawal of forces from city of Daraa

The Syrian army began withdrawing its forces from the southern city of Daraa on Thursday after days of building up its presence there, according to official state news reports.

An official military source quoted in the state news agency SANA said the army had fulfilled "most of its goals" in Daraa.

"The remaining armed terrorist members who terrorized people and left behind panic, destruction and killing in all neighborhoods were pursued," the unnamed military source was quoted as saying, DPA reported.

The source also said that scores of people were arrested and "huge amounts of up-to-date weapons and ammunition" were confiscated.

Daraa has been under siege since the Syrian military deployed into the city last week. Activists had said the city's telephone networks and water and electricity supplies have frequently been cut off by government forces.

The Syrian government has repeatedly blamed foreign infiltrators and extremist groups for widespread protests, which began March 15, calling for political reform.

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