BRUSSELS: France President François Hollande on Thursday accused Russia of not keeping its promises in Syria, while a local leader of the Syrian city of Aleppo called on Europe to send observers to ensure Security of evacuated civilians.
“I am constantly talking to Russia, and Russia is making commitments that it does not hold. Now it is time for us to conclude a ceasefire,” Hollande told a summit of EU leaders. ‘European Union.
“We can not let women, men and children suffer bombing, their security is threatened, be taken by force and treated unworthily,” he said. “The regimes that support (Syrian President) Bashar Assad will have to take responsibility for this extremely serious situation.”
Outside EU headquarters, Aleppo local councilor Brita Haj Hassan warned that 50,000 civilians in eastern Aleppo are on the brink of a massacre “By government troops.
Speaking through an interpreter, he called for “a courageous position of the European Union, a position sending the dispatch of certain forces to monitor the evacuation of civilians.”
“We have never asked a country to go to war … we just ask to save civilians and secure some corridors for their evacuation,” Hassan said.
Hassan said more than 800 wounded in eastern Aleppo must evacuate urgently and that more than 5,000 others wounded should also leave.
Residents of eastern Aleppo began to board aboard buses and ambulances on Thursday, while the long-awaited withdrawal from the last rebel enclave in the Syrian city began.
The evacuation is part of a ceasefire agreement reached this week so that the opposition cedes its last point of support to Aleppo to the Syrian government’s control over a devastating air and ground offensive by government forces.
Hundreds of Syrian civilians were killed and tens of thousands displaced as part of the Syrian government’s campaign backed by Russia to resume Aleppo.
The EU was largely sidelined during the conflict. He chose to focus his diplomatic efforts on the ceasefire, opening humanitarian corridors to leave Aleppo and pressure the leaders of the region to try to end more than five years of war.
“I am completely depressed by the situation in Aleppo, it is really tragic,” said Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern.
Hassan was later invited to the EU summit, and sat alongside EU Council President Donald Tusk as he opened the meeting.
In private talks with Hassan, Tusk acknowledged that “the last thing your people in Aleppo need today is more words of sympathy.”
“The only thing you need today is real and effective help,” said Tusk visibly emotional.