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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Joe Smith

Russia accused of killing 10 people as 30 rockets launched on displacement camps in Syria

Syrian forces backed by Russian warplanes shelled a refugee camp in an assault which used illegal cluster bombs, killing ten and injuring around 80 more.

The attack saw munitions launched in an assault on a camp for internally Displaced People (IDPs) in Syria’s northwestern city of Idlib on Sunday.

Jonathan Hargreaves, UK Special Representative for Syria, said on Twitter : “ Russia breach their own ceasefire agreement and use illegal cluster munitions on an IDP camp. This disregard for International Law must stop.”

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), an opposition war monitor, also reported that Russian warplanes fired rockets towards the Maram camp and other camps just northwest of the provincial capital of Idlib, where nine were killed and 77 wounded.

Damage caused regime shelling on the camp of Maram for internally displaced people near the village of Kafr Jales in Syria's northwestern Idlib province (AFP via Getty Images)

Three top United Nations officials dealing with the Syrian crisis — Muhannad Hadi, Ayman Gharaibeh and Sudipto Mukerjee — said in a joint statement Sunday that they are “deeply concerned by today’s escalation of hostilities” in Idlib.

“Reports indicate at least nine civilians killed, including four children, the youngest being only four months old,” they added without naming Russia as an actor.

“At least 75 additional civilians are reportedly injured. At least 400 families have reportedly been newly displaced", it continued.

SOHR reported another man was killed and several wounded in the southern countryside of Idlib while picking olives.

The attack, which reportedly used cluster bombs, shells and rockets, targeted a camp for displaced people fleeing conflict (YAHYA NEMAH/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

Charles Lister of the Middle East Institute blasted the regime assault saying forces had “launched cluster bombs into IDP camps”.

A UN statement released yesterday reported “shelling airstrikes and clashes” in the area, causing “fires and destroying the tents and homes of hundreds of displaced families in three camps supported by humanitarian organisations”.

The attack was the latest violation of a truce reached between Russia and Turkey in March 2020 that ended a Russian-backed government offensive on Idlib province. Idlib is the last major rebel-held stronghold in Syria.

One of the men killed in Sunday’s strikes was a refugee who had been deported by Turkish authorities two months ago, the observatory said.

A view of the damaged Maram camp, hosting internally displaced civilians, after the cluster bomb attack carried out by Assad regime forces and backed by Russian air strikes (Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

A Human Rights Watch report released last month found that Turkey had forcibly returned hundreds of Syrian refugees over a six-month period.

Across northwest Syria, there are 4.1 million people who depend on humanitarian assistance. This year the UN has documented the deaths of at least 121 civilians and 210 others due to hostilities in the area.

Since the war began in 2011 hundreds of thousands of people have been killed, mostly civilians. Half of the country’s pre-war population of 23 million has been displaced.

The pro-government Sham FM radio station said Syrian government forces shelled positions of the al-Qaida-linked Hayat Tahrir al-Sham group, the most powerful militant group in Idlib.

It said Syrian and Russian warplanes also attacked the areas.

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