30 feared dead in Syria barrel bomb attacks

March 8, 2014 | By | Reply More

Mar 08, Beirut – Government aircraft have dropped have crude “barrel bombs” on an embattled rebel-held city in western Syria, killing civilians, activists said. Death tolls from the reported strikes on Yabroud varied widely, as is often the case during the three-year-long conflict.

hroemdia 30 feared dead in Syria barrel bomb attacks arab uprising2The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Saturday that 16 civilians and 14 fighters died in Friday’s strikes, while an activist, who uses the name Amer, said in a Skype interview that four civilians were killed.

Forces loyal to President Bashar Al Assad have been trying for weeks to capture Yabroud, which overlooks an important highway and is used by rebels as a smuggling hub to bring weapons and fighters from eastern Lebanon. Al Assad’s forces rely on the barrel bombs, which are powerful but inaccurate and have killed hundreds of civilians. Activists say they appear to be used to clear residents from rebel-held areas ahead of an advance.

Amer said the bombs may have caused fewer civilian deaths in Yabroud than in other areas because most residents had fled across the border to Lebanon. At least 13, 400 Syrians have fled to the nearby Lebanese town of Arsal since the fighting began, according to a UN estimate from Feb. 27.

“We don’t have pressure by civilians on us (rebels) to withdraw. We have a war zone — they can bomb all they want,” he said.

Press journalist for HRO media – Khizer Hayat contributed to this report.

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Category: Arab uprising

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