Syrian Government Halts Aleppo Evacuation

The process of evacuating people from the besieged rebel-held areas of Aleppo reportedly came to a halt Friday, one day after the Syrian government—in a deal brokered between Turkey and Russia—began removing thousands of residents from the area. The reason for the evacuation plan’s breakdown is disputed: Rebel activists claimed to have heard explosions near where evacuees were set to gather, while Bashar al-Assad’s government said rebel militants fired on a convoy of evacuees at a crossing point. Syrian state-run news agency Sana claimed Friday that at least 8,000 residents had been evacuated thus far; and the United Nations and Red Cross have said that most of those leaving are civilians.