The dangerous journey to escape rebel-held Aleppo in Syria

Syrian civil war

ALEPPO -- As the Pentagon continues to insist only the Russians had a warplane directly over a bombed aid convoy heading to Aleppo, the Syrian army is shelling the rebel-held side of Syria's largest city.

Russia blamed for strike that took out aid convoy in Syria

It’s been relentless, and some on that side decided they just couldn’t take it anymore. 

“When our group reached the crossing point, we came under fire and had to scatter,” a man name Amir told us. He is too afraid to show his face, but three nights ago he was one of the ones who made a run for it.

There are ways out for people who want to leave rebel-held Aleppo and go over to the government side. Every journey is a dangerous gamble.

We climbed up to the second story in a nearby building to see the lay of the land -- a no man’s land in the divided city.

“I managed to cross it, but my family didn’t,” Amir said. “When the shooting started, they turned back.” 

But Amir pressed on, and now finds himself alone on the government side of Aleppo. He’s facing an uncertain future in a borrowed room, right on the front line.

Amir speaks with CBS News’ Elizabeth Palmer after escaping from the rebel-held side of Aleppo. CBS News

There may not be bombing, but there’s only scant opportunity -- and very little hope. 

There was some hope when the cease-fire was in effect that the violence would fall and aid begin to flow more freely -- not only in Aleppo, but also across Syria. 

Even that hope has now been crushed.

  • Elizabeth Palmer
    Elizabeth Palmer

    Elizabeth Palmer has been a CBS News correspondent since August 2000. She has been based in London since late 2003, after having been based in Moscow (2000-03). Palmer reports primarily for the "CBS Evening News."