Hundreds of Syrians displaced from Hama following 'evacuation deal'
Syrian rebel fighters and civilians are leaving their homes in Hama province, following a deal with Russia which will see opposition territories handed over the Bashar al-Assad's regime.
Hundreds of people boarded buses out of Hama for other opposition territories in northern Syria, after a years' long fight against the regime.
Two areas of Hama province are being evacuated - one in the far north and another in the south on the border with Homs.
Free Syrian Army fighters began to leave the southern section of Hama on Monday, bringing their rifles with them, following a deal with Russia earlier this month.
The rebels handed over their heavy weaponry and territories are part of the deal.
Russian military police escorted the buses as they passed through Alawite villages, with fears of sectarian attacks on the mostly Sunni convoy.
Opposition areas of Hama province waves of bombing by regime and Russian aircraft prior to the deal.
"They left rebels with no option after bombing civilians and giving them no choice either to submit or obliterate their areas and make civilians pay the price," civilian negotiator Abul Aziz al Barazi told Reuters.
Syrian opposition territories around Damascus have also been surrendered following similar so-called evacuation deals with the regime.
Eastern Ghouta was subject to a ferocious bombardment and gas attacks prior to the withdrawal of the rebels from the Damascus suburbs.