“Operation aimed to withdraw insurgents from Aleppo is over, all conditions for the start of negotiations on complete ceasefire in Syria have been established,” stated Minister of Defence General of the Army Sergei Shoigu at the meeting with the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin.
Head of the military department noted that the operation was held under the order of the head of the Russian party in close cooperation with counterparts from Turkey and Iran. He also stated that almost 34,000 people, including women and children, have left the eastern areas of Aleppo in course of the large-scale humanitarian operation.
General of the Army Sergei Shoigu stressed that liberation of Eastern Aleppo was the second stage of the operation aimed to liberate the city from insurgents. In course of the first stage of the operation, 115 quarters have been liberated, almost 110,000 people have left the city, and 9,000 insurgents laid down their arms.
“Most of them have been granted amnesty in accordance to the decision of the President of Syria Bashar al-Assad,” explained the Defence Minister.
According to Sergei Shoigu, 7 guard posts have been controlling the highway for withdrawal of insurgents. Almost 300 buses and about 400 ambulance vehicles were concentrated on the highway.
Mine clearing has become the next stage of the operation. As the Defence Minister said, it was necessary to clear the territory, which had been mined by insurgents, in order to provide safety exit from the corridors.
The head of the Russian Defence Ministry said that civilians were returning to their houses but, unfortunately, humanitarian organizations remained reluctant to operate in Syria.
He also reported on execution of the President’s order within the agreement with leaders of Turkey and Iran on unblocking another 4 inhabited areas.
Sergei Shoigu explained that it referred to 2 Shiite inhabited areas near Idlib.
“More than 1,500 older persons, women, children and injured have been evacuated from there. They have been transported to Aleppo and accommodated in normal conditions,” stated Sergei Shoigu.
Moreover, another 2 inhabited areas near Damascus have been unblocked, said the Russian Defence Minister.
“In total, approximately 9,000 people have been evacuated from there to Idlib. Insurgents have turned in more than 9,000 small arms,” noted General of the Army Sergei Shoigu.
In his turn, Vladimir Putin stated that liberation of Aleppo was very important for normalization of situation in Syria and in the region itself.
Vladimir Putin asked General of the Army Sergei Shoigu to convey his best greetings and gratitude to the Russian military servicemen in Syria for their work.