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Live Reporting

By David Molloy, Heather Sharp and Flora Drury

All times stated are UK

  1. UN chief: 'Aleppo is now a synonym for hell'

    This file photo taken on November 15, 2016 shows United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during the UN climate conference in Marrakesh.

    The UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, used what is probably his last press conference in the role to decry the international response - or lack thereof - to the Syrian crisis.

    "The carnage in Syria remains a gaping hole in the global conscience," he said.

    "Aleppo is now a synonym for hell. 

    "As I told the Security Council three days ago, we have collectively failed the people of Syria."

  2. 'We might have no hope', stranded teacher says

    Abdul Kafi Alhamdo, an English teacher and activist in Aleppo, has tweeted about his experience earlier today when he tried to leave the city.

    He said people had been waiting in "freezing" conditions since the early morning, for buses which never arrived.

    "It seems that the international community decided to let us to our destiny," he tweeted.

    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter
  3. Unicef: 'Hundreds' of children still trapped

    There are still hundreds of "vulnerable" children trapped in east Aleppo, the United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef) warned.

    Executive director Anthony Lake said Unicef was "extremely concerned about their fate" as he asked to be allowed to evacuate the children - some of whom are orphans - immediately.

    "If these children are not evacuated urgently, they could die," he said.

    More than 2,700 children have been evacuated in the last 24 hours, Mr Lake added.

  4. France: Action needed 'to avoid a new Srebrenica'

    France is calling for international observers to be deployed to Aleppo, and for urgent deliveries of humanitarian aid, at a meeting of the UN Security Council later today.

    Its ambassador to the UN, Francois Delattre, said a draft resolution from France, Germany and other European countries could be quickly adopted if there is a consensus.

    He told reporters "the immediate priority is to save lives, to stop the massacres and to avoid a new Srebrenica".

    Any consensus would require Russia agreement. If one cannot be reached, Mr Delattre said France would support calling an emergency session of the UN General Assembly.

  5. In photos: Arriving in rebel territory

    Evacuations were halted early in the day on Friday, but many people did manage to leave during the available window.

    A photographer from the Getty agency was in the rebel-controlled Khan al-Aassal area, west of Aleppo city, where rebel fighters and civilians arrived.

    An unexploded mortar round is seen on the ground (L) as Syrian rebel fighters and civilians who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region
    Image caption: An unexploded mortar lies in the road as vehicles came from the city
    Syrian rebel fighters and civilians who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region, west of the embattled city, on December 16, 2016.
    Image caption: Civilians were among those fleeing - but armed men were also present
    Syrian rebel fighters and civilians who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region, west of the embattled city, on December 16, 2016. T
    Image caption: The area, just outside Aleppo city, is controlled by anti-Assad forces
    Syrian rebel fighters and civilians who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region, west of the embattled city, on December 16, 2016.
    Image caption: Private vehicles and cars took part in the evacuations, as well as the provided buses
  6. Stranded civilians have 'nothing to keep them warm'

    The Syrian Civil Defence - also known as the "white helmets" - tweeted a photo it says shows civilians waiting for evacuations to resume earlier today.

    The group said the stranded people have "nothing to keep them warm". 

    The sun set in Aleppo at about 16:20 local time (14:20 GMT).

    View more on twitter
  7. Explosion reported in Damascus

    Syrian state news is reporting an explosion near a police station in the Syrian capital of Damascus.

    Reports said the blast took place in the Midan area of Damascus, though the cause is not yet clear.

    Damascus lies some 300km (186 miles) south of Aleppo.

  8. 350 'moderate' rebels 'being vetted' - Russia

    Lt. Gen. Sergei Rudskoi of the Russian military"s General Staff speaks at a briefing at the Russian Defense Ministry"s headquarters in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016.

    A Russian military officer has said more than 3,400 "moderate opposition fighters" laid down their arms in surrender in east Aleppo - and 350 of them are being investigated.

    "During the liberation of the eastern districts of Aleppo 3,406 moderate opposition fighters have voluntarily surrendered, stopped resistance and laid down their arms; 3,056 of them were granted amnesty, and the rest are being vetted," Lt-Gen Sergei Rudskoi said. 

    During the briefing, carried by the Russian state news channel Rossiya 24, he also accused the US of turning a blind eye to "terrorists" in Aleppo.

    "Now we have done this on our own," he said.

  9. Besieged towns

    The stalled evacuation deal apparently hinges on evacuations of injured people from the rebel-besieged towns for Foua and Kefraya in north-western Syria. Unlike nearby rebel-held Madaya, they have received little media attention.

    The Independent has just published this piece, saying a deal which allowed UN deliveries the two towns, as well as Madaya and another rebel-held town, Zabadani, broke down in October.

    "Conditions in all four settlements have deteriorated since, with a lack of food, fuel and medicine as winter sets in," the newspaper reports.

    But it quotes Siege Watch as saying government air drops have kept the situation in Foua and Kefraya stable.

    "In the last week, Foua and Kefraya have been targeted by Islamist rockets and Madaya has been hit by Hezbollah shelling in a bloody tit-for-tat in which civilians continue to suffer," the report adds.

  10. Reports of convoy deaths

    There are unconfirmed reports of deaths on one of the evacuation convoys, which was apparently then turned back. Opposition  journalist Zouhir_AlShimale tweets:

    View more on twitter

    It is unclear if this is the same incident as that reported by Turkish news agency Anadolu, which says 14 people were killed when "pro-government foreign terrorists" opened fire on a bus in a convoy.

    This has not been confirmed by other news agencies.

    View more on twitter
  11. 'Very few people could leave'

    Pro-rebel activist Lina Shamy uploaded this video from east Aleppo, blaming "Iranian militias" for breaching the ceasefire agreement.

    "Very few people could leave", she says, "there are still thousands in the city, and a lot of injured".

    View more on twitter
  12. How many people have actually been evacuated?

    Reports of just how many people have actually left under the evacuation programme vary from source to source. 

    • Britain-based monitoring group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said about 8,000 people had left the city since the evacuation began on Thursday. That number includes 3,000 fighters and more than 300 wounded, it said. 
    • Russia, allied to the Syrian government, said more than 9,500 people had been evacuated, and that only extremist fighters remained - though that was contradicted by Syrian officials.
    • The UN estimated on Thursday that some 50,000 people were still trapped in eastern Aleppo, and only 10,000 or so were rebel fighters. 

    The fate of the remaining population remains unclear.

  13. Evacuation halted: In pictures

    This bus was turned back as the evacuation was halted, and is shown travelling back towards east Aleppo. 

    Bus travelling back to east Aleppo after evacuations halted

    Thursday's evacuations took place mainly by bus and ambulance. But now trucks, cars and even this tractor - seen arriving in rebel-held Khan al-Assal - are also being used.

    A tractor carrying people from East Aleppo arrives in rebel-held Khan al-Assal

    Here pro-government forces watched from a tank as the evacuation convoy turned back towards east Aleppo.

    Forces loyal to Syria"s President Bashar al-Assad watch from a tank as an evacuation convoy turns back.
  14. 'Horrific situation' as residents tried to leave

    Monther Etaky, who has previously spoken to the BBC from Aleppo, describes discovering the path to the evacuation zone had been blocked when he tried to leave.

    He also said internet access in Aleppo has been severely limited, in line with other earlier reports. 

    View more on twitter
  15. Aleppo evacuations set to resume, Syrian state TV says

    Syrian state television reported that buses are on their way to the two towns at the centre of today's disagreement. 

    The wounded, women, and children are expected to be allowed to leave the rebel-besieged villages of Foua and Kefraya in Idlib province, ending the deadlock. 

    A Syrian official told Reuters that evacuations from east Aleppo "will resume immediately" if the agreement is honoured in the two towns. 

    A picture taken from a rebel-held area shows smoke billowing from buidings in the pro-regime Shiite town of Foua, in northwestern Idlib province, on December 6, 2016 following a reported rebel shelling.
    Image caption: This photo, taken on 6 December, shows the town of Foua under fire.
  16. Deadlock broken on crucial Idlib towns

    A rebel source told Reuters news agency that injured people will be allowed to leave two besieged towns, opening the way for new agreement on evacuations in Aleppo.

    The fate of Foua and Kefraya villages, which are under siege by rebel forces, has been a stumbling block in negotiations, resulting in the suspension of evacuations today.

    But now a Syrian rebel source told Retuers that Jabhat Fateh al-Sham - a rebel group formerly linked to al-Qaeda and known as the al-Nusra Front - had agreed to let injured people out of the besieged Shi'ite villages in Idlib province. 

    The source said the evacuation could start as early as today.

  17. What next for the evacuees?

    Syrian children, who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo, gesture as they arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region
    Image caption: These children have been evacuated - but where to?

    Thousands of people have been evacuated from the rebel-held parts of Aleppo since government forces re-took the areas.

    Some of the evacuees are being transferred to other rebel-held areas, in a neighbouring province called Idlib. Some have gone to temporary camps, some to hospitals as far afield as Turkey, and others have found shelter with relatives, aid workers say.

    But there are concerns that safety may still be a long way away - especially for those who go to Idlib.

    Read more here.

    Aleppo battle: What next for the evacuees?

    Syrian children, who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo, gesture as they arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region

    There are fears over the fate of thousands of people who are being evacuated from eastern Aleppo.

    Read more
    next
  18. Is the evacuation complete?

    Shortly before noon (GMT), Russia said the operation to evacuate people from rebel-held Aleppo was "complete", with only "radical and intransigent" militants left.

    But that claim has been directly contradicted by a Syrian official overseeing the evacuation, who told Reuters: "The operation is not yet complete".

    "There are many who should have left. But the operation halted before its end," he said.

    Turkey, which brokered the deal alongside Russia, also said the evacuation process was not yet finished.

    Syrian rebel fighters and civilians who were evacuated from rebel-held neighbourhoods in the embattled city of Aleppo arrive in the opposition-controlled Khan al-Aassal region, west of the embattled city, on December 16, 2016.
    Image caption: Rebel fighters and civilians arrive in rebel territory outside the city earlier today
  19. Evacuees 'can't all go to Turkey'

    Turkish officials have said they won't be able to re-home all the evacuees from Aleppo because of potential security risks, according to a report by Reuters. 

    Turkey plans to take wounded people in for treatment in Turkish hospitals. 

    But two potential sites that have been identified for a camp, holding up to 80,000 people, would be inside Syria itself. 

    The Turkish Red Cross said aid groups from Turkey were setting up tents.