World Health Organization: 'Aleppo evacuation halted without explanation'

By REUTERS
December 16, 2016 12:25

 
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GENEVA - The evacuation of wounded and civilians from eastern enclaves of Aleppo was aborted on Friday, and aid agencies and vehicles told to leave the area without explanation, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday.

Elizabeth Hoff, WHO representative in Syria, speaking from west Aleppo, told a news briefing in Geneva: "I assume the message (to abort the operation) came from the Russians who are monitoring the area". Her team of nine staff in east Aleppo had no contact with Syrian authorities at the Ramouseh transit site.

By 7 a.m. local time, 194 evacuated patients had arrived in eight "overwhelmed" hospitals in government-held western Aleppo, Idlib and Turkey, according to the latest WHO figures. War-wounded patients had brain and eye damage, while others are being treated for chronic diseases including diabetes, Hoff said.

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