Activists said that at least 10 civilians were killed and 50 wounded in airstrikes by Russian forces on Idlib city on Friday morning. The civil administration of Idlib on Thursday announced the full mobilization of the emergency medical services to cope with the high number of casualties among residents of the city and its countryside following a brutal wave of airstrikes by Russian jets that left at least 38 civilians killed and dozens more wounded. The most violent airstrikes targeted civilian neighborhoods of Idlib city as well as the towns of Tal Minnis, Sarmada, and Maaret Alnou’man.
Vice-president of the Syrian Coalition Muwaffaq Nyrabiya said that military escalation against civilians by the Assad regime and Russian forces comes as the date set by the United Nations for the start the transitional process in Syria nears. Nyrabiya said that such an escalation reinforced doubts repeatedly raised by the Syrian Coalition about the willingness of Russia and the Assad regime to engage seriously in the political process.
Nyrabiya pointed out that Russia’s actions in Syria demonstrate it is insistent on pursuing a military solution in Assad’s favor. Russia’s actions, however, will not weaken the resolve of the Syrian people and the Syrian opposition to reclaim freedom and dignity and build a civil state based on inclusivity and the rule of law, he stressed.
Nyrabiya called on all rebel and FSA groups to reconsider their strategies and lend an ear to calls for them to pull out of Idlib and assign the task of managing the affairs in the city to the local council and the free police forces.
The intensified Russian airstrikes on Idlib prompted an exodus of civilians towards the surrounding cities, towns and farmlands. Secondary education exams were also postponed as a result of the airstrikes and Friday prayers cancelled in all of the city’s mosques. (Source: Syrian Coalition)