Syrian rebels pull out of Homs after siege
Weary Syrian rebels left a shattered district of Homs on Thursday after a 26-day military siege aimed at crushing a symbol of the almost year-long revolt against President Bashar al-Assad.
Activists said a few fighters had stayed on in Baba Amr, which has endured weeks of shelling, sniper fire and privation, to cover the "tactical withdrawal" of their comrades.
"The Free Syrian Army and all the other fighters have left Baba Amr, they pulled out," one activist said from Homs.
A statement in the name of the fighters urged the International Committee of the Red Cross and other humanitarian groups to enter Baba Amr and bring aid to 4,000 civilians who had stayed in their destroyed houses.
"We warn the regime against any retaliation against civilians and we hold it fully responsible for their safety," the statement said.
One activist said Syrian soldiers had begun moving into Baba Amr from all directions after most of the fighters left and were hunting the rest. At least 17 rebels were killed, he said.
Posted by: tipper