Europe

EU urges Syrian regime, allies to stop attacks

Attacks on critical civilian infrastructure, by regime, allies unacceptable; must stop immediately: EU

Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak   | 23.11.2019
EU urges Syrian regime, allies to stop attacks


ANKARA

The EU on Friday urged the Syria regime and its allies to end attacks on “critical civilian infrastructure, including health and education facilities” in northwestern Syria.

At least 12 people were killed and hundreds injured Wednesday in a missile attack on a crowded residential area in a camp for displaced people in Qah in northwestern Idlib province. The attack also injured four humanitarian workers.

Buildings in the camp and a nearby maternity hospital were damaged during the attack.

“Recent attacks on a camp of internally displaced persons (IDPs) and the bombing of a critical life-saving health facility close to the Turkish border are yet another deplorable escalation in the deteriorating situation in north-west Syria,” EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement.

“The EU recalls that all parties to the Syrian conflict are bound to respect and uphold international humanitarian law and international human rights law,” she added.

Mogherini said ongoing violence not only exacerbates the suffering of civilians, particularly with regard to women and children, but also risks disrupting the intra-Syrian talks in the Constitutional Committee scheduled to be resumed in Geneva next week under the auspices of UN Special Envoy Geir Pedersen.

Turkey and Russia agreed in September 2018 to turn Idlib into a de-escalation zone where acts of aggression are expressly prohibited.

The Syrian regime and its allies, however, have consistently broken the terms of the cease-fire, launching frequent attacks inside the zone.

The de-escalation zone is currently home to 4 million civilians, including hundreds of thousands displaced in recent years by regime forces from throughout the war-weary country.

Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Hundreds of thousands of people have since been killed and more than 10 million others displaced, according to UN officials.


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