Aleppo girl Bana evacuated from war-ravaged city

Posted at 7:13 AM, Dec 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-19 07:13:53-05

A 7-year-old girl who captured the world’s attention by sending tweets from Syria’s war-ravaged city of Aleppo has been evacuated with her family, a medical charity said Monday.

Ahmad Tarakji, president of the the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), tweeted that Bana Alabed had arrived safely in the countryside of Aleppo province.

Zaher Sahloul, a SAMS relief coordinator, tweeted that Bana was “safe with her family,” adding that she survived “siege, bombing & apathy.”

It was not immediately clear if her entire family was with her. Bana has two brothers Mohammed, 5, and Noor, 3, along with her mother and father.

The young pig-tailed, gap-toothed girl has kept a harrowing log of the conflict on Twitter with the help of her mother, Fatemah Alabed.

At moments, Bana and her family posted their experiences as they were in imminent threat of being hit in airstrikes, carried out by the Syrian regime and its ally, Russia.

Three months ago, Alabed, an English teacher with a spotty Internet connection, decided she wanted the world to hear her children’s voices and see their faces, hoping that maybe she could galvanize global support for those in Aleppo.

Bana has since then become embodiment of the human toll this grinding conflict has had on the children of Syria.

On Sunday, Bana’s mother sent a Twitter post mentioning Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu to help evacuate them. Turkey helped broker the ceasefire deal that made the evacuations possible.

Bana’s family had been in hiding since their home was reduced to rubble on November 27, their location unknown.

Evacuations of civilians and rebels from Syria’s eastern Aleppo resumed late Sunday after several hours of delay.

The exodus of thousands of people from besieged areas began last week, but was suspended several times as ceasefires were violated and warring parties negotiated new terms to the deal.

They resumed on Sunday under a new complex people-swap deal after being delayed for more than 12 hours when a number of buses deployed for the evacuations were set on fire.