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Humanitarian Pause Failed: Almost No One Left Eastern Aleppo

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Terrorist groups disrupted a humanitarian pause in Aleppo, not allowing civilians and members of Islamist groups to leave eastern Aleppo.

Humanitarian Pause Failed: Almost No One Left Eastern Aleppo

Terrorists of Islamist groups disrupted a humanitarian pause in Aleppo on October 20. About an hour after the start of the ceasefire (about 09:00 am local time), a checkpoint for exit into a humanitarian corridor in the area of Bustan al-Qasr was fired with mortars and light weapons.

A crowd of onlookers, who came to look at the escape of terrorists and civilians, has quickly dispersed after the start of the shelling. Several hundreds of civilians (according to pro-government sources, up to 2,500 people) gathered on the side of Bustan al-Qasr, controlled by terrorists. They staged a spontaneous demonstration, demanding to allow them to move in the western part of Aleppo. Terrorists dispersed demonstrators, opening fire with automatic weapons over their heads. As result, several civilians were wounded.

During the day, it was quiet at other checkpoints for exit into the humanitarian corridors. Only occasionally, rare shots were heard on the side, controlled by terrorists. About 19:00 pm local time, some 10 wounded militants came in Bustan al-Qasr and asked to take them to the province of Idlib. Reportedly, nobody else has used the humanitarian corridors during the day.

In the evening, an exchange of artillery fire was resumed in the central part of the city, as well as in the north and southwest of Aleppo. Three Russian officers, who were on one of the checkpoints, were wounded. Despite the ongoing fighting, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced extension of the humanitarian pause for another day. At the same time, it became known that almost all groups in Aleppo, including ‘moderate’ ones, formally renounced the UN initiative to withdraw from eastern Aleppo in the evening of October 20.

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The Syrian-Russian exit corridors/ mini ceasefire initiative has illustrated that the militants are holding hundreds of thousands of civilians hostage to protect themselves. The recent US driven media narrative of there being a Syrian-Russian assault on city of Aleppo lacks credibility now – the opposite narrative is hard to ignore now, as result of the exit corridors being shelled by militants, of an operation to rescue hundreds of thousands of Syrian hostages being held by militants at gunpoint in East Aleppo.

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