Amnesty International condemned attacks by the Assad regime forces on hospitals and other healthcare facilities in the provinces of Idlib and Hama, stressing that attacks targeting the civilian population constituted crimes against humanity.
“Bombing hospitals carrying out their medical functions is a war crime. These latest attacks have eliminated vital lifelines for civilians in desperate need of medical care,” Lynn Maalouf, Amnesty International’s Middle East Research Director said in a press release.
Amnesty said it had interviewed 13 people about recent attacks on four hospitals and verified videos that corroborate the testimonies.
“This is part of a well-established pattern targeting medical facilities to systematically attack the civilian population and it constitutes crimes against humanity.” Maalouf added.
The rights watchdog cited eyewitnesses as saying that between 5 and 11 May, the Assad regime forces carried out multiple airstrikes on the Pulse of Life hospital in Hass, the Cave Hospital in Kaferzita, and the Surgical Hospital and Al-Sham Hospital in Kafranbel.
“All these facilities, which together serve at least 300,000 in southern Idlib and northern and western Hama countryside, are now out of service,” Amnesty said.
The Syrian Coalition condemned the ongoing onslaught on the liberated areas as it called on the UN Security Council to take a clear, firm stance towards the grave military operations in Idlib and rural Hama. It warned that the bombing campaign would have a negative impact on the political process and humanitarian conditions in the region.
Since April 25, the Assad regime and Russian air forces and the Iranian militias have launched a large-scale offensive to recapture the liberated areas in rural Hama and Idlib province. The region has been coming under ruthless aerial and artillery bombardment although it is covered by the de-escalation zone agreement. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)