- Title: Russia says will treat as terrorists rebels who refuse to leave Aleppo
- Date: 5th December 2016
- Summary: MOSCOW, RUSSIA (DECEMBER 5, 2016) (REUTERS) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV AND HIS PHILIPPINE COUNTERPART, PERFECTO R. YASSAY, ARRIVING FOR NEWS CONFERENCE MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV, SAYING: "Now, following US proposal, Russian and American experts in Geneva begin to work on the problem of eastern Aleppo. The aim of this work is complete withdrawal of all rebels from the eastern part of the city, which Russia had long supported. By the way, this was a part of the plan by the UN special envoy (on Syria Staffan) de Mistura." MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV, SAYING: "During Russian-US consultation concrete routes and time frames of withdrawal of all rebels from eastern Aleppo will be agreed. As soon as these routes and time frames are agreed, ceasefire will come into force in order to begin evacuation of these armed units. If Russian-US cooperation on these issues produces results - and we have all reasons to believe it will - then the problem of eastern Aleppo will be resolved efficiently." YASSAY LISTENING (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV, SAYING: "Under these circumstances to submit this draft to a vote would be counterproductive, I think, because it would contradict those approaches which are being now negotiated by Moscow and Washington as co-chairs of the International Syria Support group." JOURNALIST (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV, SAYING: "Those armed groups you've mentioned in the beginning and which will refuse to leave eastern Aleppo will be treated as terrorists. By not willing to leave eastern Aleppo they will continue armed fighting and we will treat them accordingly as terrorists, extremists and will support Syria's army operation against this type of bandit groups." LAVROV AND YASSAY STANDING UP, SHAKING HANDS, LEAVING
- Embargoed: 20th December 2016 11:12
- Keywords: Russia Syria Lavrov Aleppo rebels withdrawal
- Location: MOSCOW, RUSSIA
- City: MOSCOW, RUSSIA
- Country: Russia
- Reuters ID: LVA0015BLY1C7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday (December 5) he was confident Moscow and Washington can reach a deal in talks this week on the withdrawal of all rebels from the eastern part of the Syrian city of Aleppo.
He told a news conference once the deal was reached, rebels who refuse to leave the besieged part of the city will be treated as terrorists and Russia will support the operation of the Syrian army against those who stay.
Russia and the United States will start talks on the withdrawal in Geneva shortly, Lavrov said.
He added that a United Nations resolution on a ceasefire would be counterproductive because a ceasefire would allow rebels to regroup.
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