Syria’s Aleppo set ablaze ahead of fresh diplomatic efforts

September 22, 2016 | By | Reply More

Sep 22, – Key players in the Syrian peace process were to meet in New York later Thursday, with the clock ticking down as the UN warned undelivered aid for desperate civilians in Aleppo would expire in four days.

Syrian White Helmets share 'Alternative Nobel' with 3 othersHuge blazes erupted in Syria’s Aleppo as the city was rocked by fighting and air strikes Thursday, ahead of last-ditch efforts by world powers to salvage a failed ceasefire.

The truce deal brokered by Moscow and Washington fell apart earlier this week, ushering in a surge of fighting on all major fronts of Syria’s five-year civil war.

Heavy clashes gripped the outskirts of Aleppo on Thursday, after air strikes triggered major fires across the city’s devastated rebel-held districts.

An AFP correspondent in the eastern Bustan al-Qasr neighbourhood reported that his entire street was in flames following the pre-dawn strikes.

Volunteer firefighters battled throughout the night to contain the blazes, which local activists at the Aleppo Media Centre said were caused by “incendiary phosphorous bombs.”

In footage posted by the group, a ball of flame shoots up over the city, lighting up the skyline and sparking fires on the horizon.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said strikes on the rebel-held neighbourhoods of Bustan al-Qasr and Al-Kalasseh “led to massive fires” overnight.

Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman said they were “the most intense strikes in months” on those two districts. He said raids by Russian warplanes on Thursday killed 13 people, including three women, in the city.

– ‘Assad, do your bit’ –

“The non-stop strikes last night were so violent I can’t even describe them,” said Ibrahim Abu al-Leith, spokesman for the White Helmets, a prominent Syrian group of emergency responders.

One volunteer was wounded in the strikes and ensuing fires, Abu al-Leith told AFP.

The White Helmets on Thursday won the Right Livelihood Award “for their outstanding bravery, compassion and humanitarian engagement”, announced the jury for the Swedish human rights award, known as the “alternative Nobel prize”.

Residents of east Aleppo’s have been living under government siege since early September.

Food aid promised for them under the US-Russia deal has been stalled at the border since last week and will go bad in just a few days.

Press journalist for HRO media – Khizer Hayat reports.

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Category: Arab uprising

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