Airstrikes by Syrian government kill at least 100 in Damascus suburb

August 17, 2015 | By | Reply More

Aug 17, – Syrian government warplanes attacked a busy market in a rebel-held suburb of the capital, Damascus, killing at least 100 people and wounding more than 200 in one of the deadliest single incidents involving air strikes since the conflict began nearly five years ago, activists have said.

hromedia Air strikes near Damascus kill at least 80 people arab uprising3Syrian government air raids on rebel-held areas throughout the country have killed thousands over the past few years.

The strike on the market in Douma occurred during rush hour on Sunday when people were out shopping on the first working day of the week in Syria, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

“This is an official massacre that was carried out deliberately,” said Rami Abdurrahman, who heads the organisation. He said warplanes fired the first missile and minutes later, when people gathered in the aftermath, another missile hit the same area.

Abdurrahman, whose group has a network of activists around the country and has been found to offer reliable statistics in the past, said four missiles were fired on the market, killing 82 and wounding more than 200. He said the death toll is expected to rise because many of the wounded are in critical condition.

The Local Coordination Committees, another activist network, said the air strikes killed at least 100 and wounded about 300, adding that rescue workers were digging through the rubble in search of survivors.

Discrepancies in death tolls immediately after an attack are not uncommon in Syria.

“The situation is catastrophic,” said a Douma-based activist who goes by the name of Mazen al-Shami . He said clinics in the area were full and many of the wounded were being rushed in civilian cars to other medical facilities since ambulances were overwhelmed.

Shami said mosque loudspeakers were issuing calls for residents to donate all types of blood. He added that hundreds of people were in the busy market when the first missile struck the area, inflicting heavy casualties.

An amateur video posted online by activists showed about 40 bodies of men and boys lined on the side of a street. Another video showed people helping the wounded leave the heavily damaged market area.

The videos appeared genuine and corresponded to other reporting of the events.

Syria’s civil war, now in its fifth year, has killed more than 250,000 people and wounded at least a million.

On Saturday, al-Qaida’s affiliate in Syria released seven members of a US-backed rebel faction that it abducted late last month, the rebel group said in a statement.

The Division 30 group said in a statement that it hopes the Nusra Front – the al-Qaida affiliate – will release the group’s commander who has been held since 30 July. Days after the abduction, the Nusra Front attacked the Division 30 command in northern Syria, leading to the near-collapse of the group, which has dozens of fighters.

The kidnapping and attack on Division 30, came a few days after the US and Turkey announced the outlines of a deal to help rebels push Islamic State fighters back from a strip of territory they control along the Syrian-Turkish border, replacing them with more moderate rebels backed by Washington and Ankara.

The Nusra Front said at the time it abducted the rebels because they were trained by the US.

The Division 30 statement described Nusra Front fighters as “brothers” and thanked them for the release, saying: “We value this noble step.”

It said Division 30 was on the “same page with all holy warriors in Syria”.

Press journalist for HRO media – Khizer Hayat reports.


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Category: Arab uprising

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