5-hour truce called by Russia takes into effect in eastern Syria

BEIRUT - A five-hour truce called by Russia started on Tuesday in the Syrian rebel-held eastern Ghouta near Damascus with the stated aim of allowing people to escape the area which is being targeted in a fierce offensive by the Moscow-backed government.
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the daily truce from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the creation of a "humanitarian corridor" to let civilians leave the area, where government bombardment has killed hundreds since Feb. 18.
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