Remarks to the press by Ambassador Vitaly Churkin, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations, before the Security Council meeting on Syria
Q: We heard about some ceasefire deal in Aleppo. Can you tell us any details about this agreement?
V.Churkin: Well, my latest information is that there is indeed an arrangement achieved on the ground that the fighters are going to leave the city. So it is about over.
Q: When will this happen?
V.Churkin: Within hours, maybe.
Q: Ambassador, about Aleppo again. Can you tell us more about the agreement?
V.Churkin: Now it is going to be under the control of the Syrian government. So there is no need for the remaining civilians to leave. All humanitarian arrangements are in place. And I am going to talk about it in more detail at the meeting of the Security Council. And as of yesterday night just 3 sq. km of the territory continued to be under the control of the fighters. And now my latest information is that there has been an agreement on the ground that they are going to leave.
Q: UN says that Syrian government is executing civilians, up to 82 civilians including women and children.
V.Churkin: I would be interested to know the source of this information. Our military is on the ground and there are some ICRC people on the ground, there are some UN humanitarians on the ground. They should know better. My information is that our military people who are there are not observing any abuses of international humanitarian law.
Q: How will this agreement ensure the safety of the civilians?
V.Churkin: The agreement is for the fighters to leave. The civilians if they can stay they can go to safer places. They can take advantage of the humanitarian arrangements which are on the ground. Nobody is going to harm the civilians.