For the first time since the start of the onslaught on northwestern Syria, the United Nations accused Russia and the Assad regime of responsibility for the “carnage in the so-called de-escalation zone” of Idlib.
Bombing and shelling in Syria for more than 90 days by the Assad regime and Russia have led to “carnage in the so-called de-escalation zone” of Idlib, Mark Lowcock, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council on Tuesday, in his seventh update since the “current onslaught” began.
Lowcock said that “this latest relentless campaign of airstrikes by the government and its allies has continued to hit medical facilities, schools and other civilian infrastructure such as markets and bakeries. These are civilian objects and it seems highly unlikely, given the persistent pattern of such attacks, that they are all being hit by accident.”
“On 26 July, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) identified at least 450 civilians who have been killed since late April – including more than a hundred in the last two weeks alone” Lowcock reminded Council members.
The humanitarian chief added: “We see videos, of explosions, destroyed buildings, scorched bodies and screaming children.” He asked: “Are you going to…do something about it?”
UN sources said that if the Assad regime and Russia were confirmed to have used the coordinates provided by the United Nations of the de-conflicted facilities, it would be a “war crime.”
Ten UN Security Council members earlier urged the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guteress to from a commission to investigate the Assad regime and Russia’s targeting of civilian infrastructure in Idlib province.
Nearly 500 civilians have been killed in the bombardment on Idlib province since April 28, with more than 440,000 people having been displaced, according to Farhan Haq, deputy spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
The Syrian Coalition considered that Russia is a partner in the ongoing “massacres” against civilians, condemning in the strongest terms the relentless bombardment being carried out by the Russian enemy and the Assad regime on civilian areas since late April. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)