Syrian troops take control of water facility from rebels

DAMASCUS, Syria: Syrian state TV and military media army say government troops have gained control of the main water source for Damascus.

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The development Saturday could signal the end of a standoff in the Barada Valley that restricted the water flow to nearly 5 million residents for nearly a month. The fighting trapped tens of thousands of civilians in the rebel-held area.

The opposition monitoring group Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says government forces entered Ain el-Fijeh as part of a deal to end the fighting that continued despite a cease-fire. The deal would also mean rebels will either put down their weapons or evacuate.

The fighting was sparked by government claims that rebels poisoned the water source at Ain el-Fijeh — a claim the rebels denied.

AP

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