Russia halts Aleppo airstrikes 2 days before expected

End to attacks came before Thursday's planned pause in bombing raids

Russia halts Aleppo airstrikes 2 days before expected

World Bulletin / News Desk

Russian and Syrian jets have ceased airstrikes around the north Syrian city of Aleppo, two days before a planned pause in bombing to allow humanitarian access, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said Tuesday.

In a televised meeting with military officers, Shoigu said the airstrikes ended at 10 a.m. local time (0700GMT) and described the move as “essential” for Thursday’s “humanitarian pause”.

On Monday, Moscow said an eight-hour pause in attacks would allow civilians and opposition fighters to leave Aleppo while aid groups access the city through six corridors.

Shoigu said Russia expected opposition fighters to leave via two corridors -- Castello Road and Al-Khai Souq market -- and that Syrian troops would retreat to allow them to leave with their weapons.

He called on the countries with influence over the opposition groups to convince them to “stop military action and abandon the city”.

Military officials from different countries will meet on Wednesday in Geneva to begin separating “terrorists” from the moderate opposition, Shoigu said.

A cease-fire brokered last month ended after Russian and Syrian warplanes carried out airstrikes that the West said targeted civilians and aid convoys around Aleppo. It was the latest failed attempt to end the five-year civil war that has killed hundreds of thousands.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 18 Ekim 2016, 13:55