The Syrian government has established control over eastern Aleppo, Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s Ambassador to the United Nations, told the UN Security Council on Tuesday.
“Over the last hour we’ve received information that the military activities in east Aleppo have stopped,” Churkin said, according to a simultaneous translation provided by the UN.
“So there’s no question about cessation of hostilities, or humanitarian operations. The Syrian government has established control over east Aleppo so now the stage has come for practical humanitarian initiatives.”
Sources inside Aleppo tell CNN a ceasefire and evacuation agreement has been reached in the beleaguered eastern part of the city. The Aleppo ceasefire and evacuation agreement was reached with “Turkish mediation,” a commander in the Islamist rebel group Ahrar al-Sham told CNN. The Turkish Foreign Affairs ministry confirmed its involvement in the deal to CNN and said civilians will be evacuated to the city of Idlib.
The development is a hopeful one for the international community, which has failed to find a political solution to the crisis in Aleppo, which has become the epicenter of Syria’s brutal five-year war. Rebel groups held eastern Aleppo for more than four years after the Arab Spring uprising and a Syrian government siege on the area had essentially cut it off from the outside world, sparking a humanitarian crisis there.