Musa Kourani waves from inside a Red Crescent vehicle after his release. / AFP / George OURFALIAN
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Five Hezbollah captives were released Thursday and returned to Lebanon from the rebel-held Syrian province of Hama as part of a deal that ended Jabhat Fatah al-Sham's armed presence in the country.The exchange of the Hezbollah fighters was previously set to take place in the Al-Rashideen neighborhood of Aleppo, according to Hezbollah's War Media Center.Jabhat Fatah al-Sham fighters abandoned their positions and were transported from Lebanon to Syria Wednesday, as part of a cease-fire agreement that came into effect last Thursday. The agreement ended Hezbollah's week-long offensive against the militants on the outskirts of Arsal. Hezbollah's "Operations Room" announced in a statement published by War Media Center that the outskirts of Arsal and Syria's Flita, in western Qalamoun, had been liberated from Jabhat Fatah al-Sham militants.One of the most important militant positions taken over by Hezbollah fighters was Hosn al-Kherba, which looks out over Al-Malabi and the Al-Ajram Valley, the War Media Center reported.Another group of Hezbollah fighters advanced toward the remaining Jabhat Fatah al-Sham positions, having dismantled a number of explosives, the War Media Center reported.
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