No Civilian Deaths Since Syrian As Ceasefire Brings Calm

Observatory Praises Most Successful Ceasefire Effort Yet

by Jason Ditz, September 13, 2016

While Syrian rebels were all insisting that the ceasefire would almost certainly fail in short order, a period of relative calm seems to have returned to the country since it went into effect Monday evening, with some stray gunfire here and there, but no major incidents.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights praised the ceasefire as the most successful such effort of the civil war, and noted around noon on Tuesday that not a single civilian death had been confirmed since the ceasefire came into effect.

That’s continued to be the case, with Syrian hospitals noting that they have empty beds for the first time in a long while, and that their only patients are sick people this time, not scores of gunshot victims and other casualties of war.

The UN likewise confirmed that in the first 24 hours of the ceasefire there had been “dramatic” improvements to the security situation nationwide, and while aid has yet to really start flowing in earnest, there seems to be no real obstacle to those deliveries ramping up.

The heaviest reported fighting today was in northern Hama Province, with some Islamist rebels opening fire on army positions around the village of Maan. There were no reports of casualties, however, and it was unclear exactly who these rebels were.

The ceasefire is tentatively set to last for seven days, though there appears to be no obstacle to extending it beyond that length. Secretary of State John Kerry suggested that if the ceasefire holds and if the Syrian government doesn’t do any fighting against the Nusra Front, the US and Russia may launch joint attacks on Nusra.

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