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Aleppo Evacuation Plan Shattered by More Bombs

Syrian activists say warplanes have again begun bombing eastern Aleppo, threatening an already-shaky ceasefire deal established between rebels and pro-government troops. A withdrawal, meant to allow evacuation by civilians and rebel forces, was supposed to start at dawn Wednesday. Instead, shelling resumed in the morning. Buses that had been set aside to aid in the evacuations returned to their depots. Many interpreted the return of the empty green buses as a signal that the ceasefire agreement was off entirely. Rebels and activists who remained in the city’s last rebel-held territory said the area was struck with dozens of rockets since the alleged withdrawal was set to begin. Ibrahim al-Haj, a spokesman for the Syrian Civil Defense first responders, said, “They are using all forms of weapons.” Turkish officials accused President Bashar al-Assad’s forces of trying to sabotage the ceasefire agreement. “We see now that the regime and other groups are trying to obstruct this [deal],” said Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. “This includes Russia, Iran, forces supported by Iran and the regime.”