Some 350 people were able to leave a rebel-held pocket of east Aleppo on Sunday, a medical official said, despite the official postponement of evacuations of civilians and fighters from the devastated Syrian city.
Dozens of buses had entered Aleppo earlier in the day to resume evacuations, but plans were called off at the last minute after gunmen attacked vehicles for a similar operation from two rebel-besieged villages.
The development came as the UN Security Council prepared to vote on a resolution to deploy observers to the city, with Syria-allied Russia giving cautious backing to the measure.
“Five buses carrying the evacuees arrived from besieged parts of east Aleppo,” said Ahmad al-Dbis, who heads a team of doctors and volunteers co-ordinating evacuations to rebel-held Khan al-Assal..
“They were in a terrible state,” Dbis told AFP.
“They hadn’t eaten, they had nothing to drink, the children had caught colds, they were not even able to go to the toilet,” he added.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the 350 were able to be evacuated after Russia and Turkey urged the Syrian regime to allow the convoy of buses to pass its final control point.
Evacuations were suspended on Friday, a day after convoys of people had begun leaving the rebel sector under a deal allowing the regime to take full control of the battleground city.
ALEPPO AFP Dec19, 2016