Aleppo Christians celebrate holiday in hope peace has returned

By REUTERS
December 26, 2016 03:40

 
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Christians in Aleppo celebrated under a giant Christmas tree lit up for the first time in five years, hailing what many described as the return of peace to a city that came back under full government control last week.

The fall of rebel-held east Aleppo was the biggest victory of Syria's nearly six-year-old civil war for supporters of President Bashar al-Assad, and many in pro-government parts of the city have been jubilant.

However, the rebel defeat has also brought severe hardship on civilians who fled from insurgent-held areas, thousands of whom have been forced to camp in wilderness under the snow. Aid groups say many are in peril and children have died from exposure to severe winter weather.

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