16:33 GMT14 May 2021
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    Unarmed militants as well as civilian residents began on Wednesday to leave eastern parts of Syria's embattled city of Aleppo in line with agreements with Damascus authorities, state-run news agency SANA said.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Damascus announced earlier on Wednesday that units of the Syrian army and armed militia had withdrawn from Aleppo to a pre-determined distance to ensure the safe evacuation of unarmed militants, and civilians from eastern Aleppo.

    "Unarmed militants, as well as a group of wounded, ill and elderly civilians left the eastern districts of Aleppo heading to northern outskirts via specially designated corridors, opened by the Syrian army in coordination with the Russian side," a SANA correspondent reported from the site.

    Earlier in the day, the Russian Defense Ministry extended for three more hours the previously announced humanitarian pause in Aleppo, which would start from 08:00 local time (05:00 GMT) on October 20 and run through 19:00 local time.

    Aleppo has been engulfed in a heavy fighting since the government forces began a major offensive on the rebel-held eastern districts of the city following the collapse of the ceasefire brokered by Russia and the United States in early September.


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