Aleppo Evacuations Stopped Amid Safety Fears

StoryfulPublished: January 13, 201715 views
Published: January 13, 2017

The evacuation from rebel-held parts of Aleppo was put on hold on December 16, after only about <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSIct9V3ThE" target="_blank">8,000 people</a> were successfully transferred out of the city. The stoppage was announced by an <a href="https://twitter.com/RMardiniICRC" target="_blank"><span class="caps">ICRC</span> spokesman</a>.

The stoppage came amid reports of gunfire or <a href="https://twitter.com/danriversitv/status/809687525107310593" target="_blank">mortar fire</a> along the route. There were conflicting reports as to the reason why, with anti-government sources blaming Iranian militias and pro-government sources blaming rebel fighters.

According to local reports, a convoy was attempting to leave the city at the time the evacuations were halted, and was forced to turn back towards the rebel enclave. This video, uploaded on December 16, was described as showing the final convoy, with buses and <span class="caps">ICRC</span> vehicles from the convoy stopped en route.

Other <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-aleppo-who-idUSKBN145181" target="_blank">reports said</a> that the World Health Organization (<span class="caps">WHO</span>), had been told to remove its ambulances and buses from the city, and that <a href="https://twitter.com/HalabTodayTV/status/809725241224294400" target="_blank">Russian spokespeople said</a> the evacuation operation had concluded.

A spokesman for the <span class="caps">ICRC</span>, Robert Mardini, said that the evacuation had been <a href="https://twitter.com/RMardiniICRC/status/809696591561064448" target="_blank">put on hold</a>, despite <span class="caps">ICRC</span> estimates that the evacuation <a href="https://www.icrc.org/en/document/aleppo-evacuation-could-take-days-thousands-people-need" target="_blank">could take days</a>. Some 50,000 people, including 40,000 civilians, were reportedly <a href="http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-38336928" target="_blank">in need of evacuation</a>.

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