Syrian regime forces shelled tent settlements housing families displaced by the country’s conflict in the rebel-held northwest early Sunday, killing at least six people and wounding dozens, opposition war monitors and first responders said.
The shelling is the latest violation of a truce reached between Russia and Turkey in March 2020 that ended a Russian-backed regime offensive on Idleb province that is the last major rebel-held stronghold in Syria.
The truce has been repeatedly violated over the past two years, killing and wounding scores of people.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition war monitor, reported that government forces fired about 30 rockets toward rebel-held areas, including the Maram camp Sunday morning killing six and wounding 25. It said the dead included two children and one woman.
The tent settlement is just northwest of the provincial capital of Idleb.
Regime Forces People of Daraya to Demolish their Homes. What’s the Fate of Properties of the Displaced?
Rebel factions responded by targeting government positions with artillery and missiles in the area of Saraqib, east of Idleb, and the al-Ghab plain, the observatory reported.
The opposition’s Syrian Civil Defense, also known as White Helmets, reported that six people were killed, including two children and a woman, and 75 injured in shelling targeting at least six camps west of the capital.
The pro-government Sham FM radio station said Syrian government forces shelled positions of the al-Qaida-linked Hayat Tahrir al-Sham group, the most powerful militant group in Idleb. It said Syrian and Russian warplanes also attacked the areas.
Syria’s conflict broke out in March 2011 and has since killed hundreds of thousands of people, displaced half the country’s pre-war population of 23 million and left large parts of Syria destroyed.
Syrian Parties Denounce shelling
The Syrian Opposition denounced on Sunday the bombardment carried out by Syrian government forces on IDP camps in the western countryside of Idleb, northwest Syria.
Head of the opposition Syrian National Coalition (SOC) Salem al-Meslet tweeted, “The situation cannot tolerate more international silence and the absence of response and accountability.”
“The criminal regime coloured Syria’s morning with the blood of dozens of martyrs and wounded people, after targeting an IDPs camp, west of Idleb, with missiles loaded with cluster bombs, which are internationally prohibited, in coincidence with Russian airstrikes that targeted farms and forests in the area,” he added.
Al-Meslet deemed that this paves the way for massacres against the people, and demanded Security Council to convene and to take punitive measures against those parties who carried out the bombardment.
Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) also condemned the attack.
Farhad Shami, director of the SDF Media Center, tweeted, “Idleb massacre is the sibling of the massacre of Zirgan (Abu Rasin) that Turkey had committed against innocent children.”
This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.