Middle East

Russian airstrikes kill 5 civilians in northern Syria

Russian forces continue airstrikes in Syria's Idlib de-escalation zone

Esref Musa, Mehmet Burak Karacaoglu   | 22.01.2020
Russian airstrikes kill 5 civilians in northern Syria

IDLIB, Syria

At least five civilians were killed Wednesday as Russian warplanes carried out new airstrikes in Syria's Idlib de-escalation zone Wednesday, according to a Syrian civil defense group. 

The Syrian opposition aircraft observatory said Russia targeted Ma’arrat al-Numan district, Kafr Rumah town, Serce village as well as Atarib district of Aleppo.

While Russian jets were carrying out airstrikes, the Assad regime's forces attacked villages in southern Idlib.

The White Helmets civil defense group announced that four civilians died due to the airstrikes and one was killed by the regime's artillery fire.

The groups said search and rescue operations are continuing in the region and feared the death toll could rise.

On Tuesday, Russian warplanes conducted airstrikes in the de-escalation zone, killing at least 26 civilians.

Turkey has pushed hard for a cease-fire in Idlib after the region endured months of battering by forces loyal to the Bashar al-Assad regime and its allies, sending 1 million civilian refugees fleeing toward the Turkish border.

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

Since then, more than 1,300 civilians have been killed in attacks by the regime and Russian forces as the cease-fire continued to be violated.

More than 1 million Syrians have moved near the Turkish border due to intense attacks in the last year.

*Writing by Fahri Aksut

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