The intensified rocket and artillery shelling by regime forces on the Qaboun district in Damascus has put the only remaining hospital in the rebel-held district out of services, medical sources said.
Khaled Abu Walid, a member of the information office in Alhayat hospital, said that regime forces directly targeted the hospital with the “elephant rockets,” a short-range DIY weapon. He pointed out that two civilians were killed and others wounded in the bombardment, while patients were evacuated as the hospital was put out of service.
Abu Walid said that in addition to the residents of Qaboiun, Alhayat hospital provided medical services to residents of the nearby districts of Tishreen, parts of Barzah, and the town of Harasta on the outskirts of Damascus. The hospital consisted of departments of obstetrics, gynecology, ophthalmology, as well as clinics and emergency services unit.
Meanwhile, the local council in Tishreen declared the district a “disaster area” on Wednesday due to intensified bombardment by regime forces for nearly a week.
The local council said that regime forces, backed by Iranian militias and Russian air forces, began a bombing campaign on the district last week, targeting the area with an average of at least 20 surface-to-surface rockets and dozens of artillery shells every day.
The intensified bombing campaign is aimed at displacing the local residents and bringing about a demographic change in the area, the council said. The ongoing assault has resulted in scores of civilian deaths and injuries and widespread destruction to civilian infrastructure.
The district of Tishreen is home to more than 35,000 people, most of whom were displaced from the nearby eastern Ghouta.
The Free Council of Damascus Province in mid-February called upon the international community to stop plans by the Assad regime and its allies to empty the besieged areas around Damascus and its southern suburbs from the local population. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Smart News Network)