Evacuations from Aleppo begin as part of cease-fire deal

World Today

This image released by the Thiqa News Agency, shows civilians gathering for evacuation from eastern Aleppo, Syria, Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016. (Thiqa News via AP)

A convoy of ambulances carrying civilians and rebels began leaving eastern Aleppo on Thursday, marking the start of the long-awaited pullout from the last rebel enclave in the embattled Syrian city.CCTV’s Alaa Ebrahim reports.Follow Alaa Ebrahim on Twitter @Alaa_Ebrahim_tv

Evacuations from Aleppo begin as part of cease-fire deal

A convoy of ambulances carrying civilians and rebels began leaving eastern Aleppo on Thursday, marking the start of the long-awaited pullout from the last rebel enclave in the embattled Syrian city.CCTV's Alaa Ebrahim reports.


Syrian TV showed live footage of a long convoy of ambulances and green buses driving out and crossing the Ramouseh bridge, en route through government territory and into a rural, rebel-held part of Aleppo province.

The evacuation is part of a cease-fire deal reached this week to have the rebels surrender their last foothold in Aleppo to Syrian government control.

Syrian President Bashar Assad said that ‘history is being made’ with the defeat of insurgents in Aleppo.

Ambulances carrying the ill and wounded were also seen leaving alongside the buses.

Ingy Sedky, Damascus spokeswoman for the International Committee of the Red Cross, told The Associated Press that 13 ambulances, each carrying two wounded people, and 20 buses, each carrying up to 50 people, left in the convoy. The evacuation included some critically wounded people.

“This is the first convoy today,” she said, adding that more are expected later in the day.

Plans to evacuate on Wednesday were scuttled when the area erupted in violence, raising the haunting possibility that all-out war could consume the city again. Much of eastern Aleppo has been reduced to a scene of devastation and rubble.

Earlier Thursday, the ICRC confirmed its staff arrived together with the Syrian Arab Red Cross to evacuate 200 wounded people from the enclave, some in critical condition.

Reporting by The Associated Press and Xinhua.