World Bulletin / News Desk
Russia and the Syrian regime may destroy Syria’s opposition-held eastern Aleppo, where 275,000 civilians live, on the pretext of killing 900 al-Nusra terrorists, UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura warned Thursday.
Speaking at a press conference in Geneva, de Mistura also offered to go to eastern Aleppo to accompany al-Nusra fighters willing to get out of the city.
Earlier, the International Syria Support Group's Humanitarian Access Task Force convened in UN in Geneva to discuss the situation following intensified fighting in eastern Aleppo, suspension of U.S.-Russia talks and the failed cessation of hostilities in Syria.
"No one can deny that we are in an emergency mode regarding Syria, Aleppo and future of the conflict," de Mistura said.
He noted there were currently 900 al-Nusra fighters in eastern Aleppo, while total rebel fighters in eastern Aleppo was 8,000. He highlighted the fact there were also 275,000 people in eastern Aleppo, 100,000 of them were children.
"Since 23rd of September, 376 people have been killed, one third of them children cannot be all terrorists," de Mistura said, adding: "There is a need of medical evacuation…for 200 people in eastern Aleppo."
"In maximum two-and-half months, the city of eastern Aleppo at this rate, may be totally destroyed...thousands of civilians, not terrorists, will be killed...this is what you, we and world will be seeing when we will be trying to celebrate Christmas or end of the year," he said.
He also said that if nearly 1,000 al-Nusra fighters decide to leave eastern Aleppo, "l am personally and physically ready to accompany you."
In a message to Russia and Syrian regime, de Mistura said: "Please look at my eyes too, and eyes of the world and the public opinion. Are you ready to continue this type of level of fighting using that type of weapons and de-facto destroy the whole eastern city of Aleppo, with its own 275,000 people, for the sake of eliminating 1,000 al-Nusra fighters? Or are you rather ready to announce immediate and total aerial bombardment hold if al-Nusra leaves?"
Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011 when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests – which erupted as part of the Arab Spring uprisings – with unexpected ferocity.
The Syrian Center for Policy Research, a Beirut-based nongovernmental organization, has put the total death toll from the five-year conflict at more than 470,000.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 06 Ekim 2016, 20:09