A new analysis found that Russia’s bombing raids across two conflicts in the past decade have overwhelmingly targeted built-up civilian areas, with the vast majority of victims being classed as non-combatants.
The study of Russian airstrikes, missile and artillery bombardments covered both the conflicts in Syria and Ukraine since 2012, and reveals the Kremlin’s “blatant disregard for civilian protection”, according to the London-based research charity Action on Armed Violence (AOAV).
The organization’s analysis found that 84 percent of Russia’s targeted bombings in the last 10 years were aimed at densely populated towns and cities. From these attacks, 98 percent of the victims were classified as civilians.
Out of 15,391 casualties caused by Russian explosive weapons from 2012 to 2022, 12,114 were civilian casualties, according to the analysis. It found that there were at least 1,477 reported incidents of Russia’s use of explosive weapons in populated areas, resulting in 11,014 civilian fatalities.
AOAV has recorded 6,888 casualties in Syria from Russian weapons, out of which 4,179 or 61 percent were civilians.
The Syrian Civil Defense Corps, also known as the White Helmets, said that more than 12,000 civilians, including 4,000 children, have been killed in Russian attacks since the start of the Russian intervention in Syria in September 2015.
Meanwhile, the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC) stressed that Russia has committed thousands of massacres in Syria and has obstructed Security Council resolutions to hold the Assad regime accountable for its crimes. It pointed out that the indifference of the international community towards Syria encouraged Russia to persist in its tyranny and launch a similar brutal aggression on Ukraine.
The SOC called on the international community to find an effective mechanism for saving the lives of civilians in Syria by deterring Russia and advancing a political transition so as to ensure an end to human suffering and the realization of the Syrian people’s aspirations for freedom, dignity and democracy.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)