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700,000 people remain in Syria’s Aleppo — Russian defense minister

Fourty people were executed on Sunday in Aleppo’s eastern part

MOSCOW, August 15. /TASS/. Some 700,000 residents remain in the Syrian city of Aleppo, according to Russian Defense Ministry assessments, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said Monday.

"It was a large city with over 2 million residents before the war. Now there certainly are way fewer people there. According to our assessments, it’s some 700,000 residents," Shoigu said.

"I know that 40 people were executed yesterday in Aleppo’s eastern part," he told the Rossiya 24 television channel in an interview.

Shoigu said routes created for evacuation of civilians from Aleppo are constantly mined by militants.

"We are forced to make additional routes in the hope that they will fail to mine all of them. Our humanitarian convoys are constantly going there," he said, adding that Russian specialists help restore destroyed water pumping stations and pipelines and that Russia provides medical facilities and ambulances.

Moscow and Damascus started a joint humanitarian operation in Aleppo on July 28. A few corridors for civilians and militants to leave the city were opened. Foodstuffs, medications, articles of prime necessity are delivered to Aleppo.

The Russian Armed Forces General Staff reported later that from August 11 hostilities in Aleppo will be stopped for three hours per day for passage of humanitarian convoys inside of the city.