Opposition, Assad forces reach Aleppo ceasefire deal
ANKARA - Anadolu AgencySyrian opposition forces in eastern Aleppo have reached a ceasefire deal with Bashar al-Assad forces to evacuate civilians in the besieged city.
According to a source from the opposition forces, the move came after Turkey-brokered talks with Russia that were concluded at 7 p.m. local time.
As part of the fresh deal, the civilians trapped in the conflict-hit zone will be moved via buses to the western part of the city.
Later, the opposition fighters will be evacuated. The same sources said a large number of opposition fighters agreed to leave the city.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu held a phone conversation with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov following the truce deal.
Since mid-November, more than 1,071 civilians have been killed in eastern Aleppo in attacks by Syrian regime and Russian warplanes, according to local sources.
The fierce bombardments have forced most of the city’s hospitals to halt operations, while most academic activities have been indefinitely suspended.
Recent days have seen the Russia-backed Assad regime reestablish control over parts of Aleppo captured four years ago by armed opposition groups.
Syria has been locked in a devastating civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests -- which had erupted as part of the "Arab Spring" uprisings -- with unexpected ferocity.
Since then, hundreds of thousands of people are believed to have been killed by the conflict and millions more displaced.