The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said that least 13 children were killed over the last week in Idlib province, saying that such an attack is “deeply sad reminders that the war on children in Syria is far from over.”
Russian jets on Thursday bombed a children hospital in the town of Zardana in rural Idlib, killing and injuring dozens of children.
“An attack allegedly hit the village of Zardana in the northwestern governorate of Idlib killing nine children, said Geert Cappelaere, UNICEF’s regional director in the Middle East and North Africa, said in a statement Monday.
“Idlib is home to nearly 1 million children, many of them displaced from other parts of the country. With nowhere left to go, families have sought refuge in collective shelters and schools,” Cappelaere added.
“Since 2011, when the conflict began, nearly 6 million children were uprooted from their homes,” Cappelaere said. “Idlib is home to nearly 1 million children, many of them displaced from other parts of the country. With nowhere left to go, families have sought refuge in collective shelters and schools.”
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, on Monday, called for an investigation into the airstrikes believed to have been carried out by Russian jets in Idlib on Thursday to establish accountability. He called on guarantors of the ‘de-escalation zones’ agreement to honor their commitments.
Guterres underscored the precarious plight of the estimated 2.3 million people in Idlib governorate, 60 percent of whom are civilians displaced by the conflict from other areas, most recently from Eastern Ghouta.
In a press release issued on Friday, the Syrian Coalition accused Russia of deliberately bombing an area that is covered by the ‘de-escalation zones’ agreement. It underscored that “the perpetrator of this act is a vengeful, seasoned criminal.”
The Coalition the Syrian people have lost any confidence or hope in the international community given its continued inaction and the indifference it is showing towards the atrocities taking place in Syria.
The Coalition called for urgent action to be taken in order to save civilians, stop these crimes, hold those responsible accountable, and impose a just and comprehensive political solution.”
The Syrian Civil Defense said that the attack on Zardana claimed the lives of at least 44 civilians and injured more than 100 others. It noted that the Russian air force carried out a double-tap attack, targeting first responders to the first attack. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)