After 540 casualties in a month of violent clashes and shelling, south Damascus witnesses a cautious calm in a wait for carrying out an agreement between parties of the fight
The military operations south of the capital Damascus, have completed its first month since its outbreak on 19th of April 2018, after the “Islamic State” organization’s break for the agreement reached with the regime forces and allies; about the leave of ISIS from the neighborhoods of al-Kadam, al-Hajar al-Aswad, Yarmouk Camp, and, al-Tadamon to the Syrian Desert, and the pace of clashes continued to escalate as a result of regime forces’ attempt to end the existence of the Organization in the area, where the regime forces and militiamen loyal to them of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities kept on advancing, until they were able to achieve the first strategic advancement by controlling al-Kadam neighbourhood and then controlling the enclave located on the northern outskirts of Yarmouk Camp, which is under the control of Hayyaat Tahrir al-Sham, which left the area by an agreement with the regime, by which its members with their families moved to Idlib province north of Syria, followed by another advancement by the regime forces in al-Hajar al-Aswad neighbourhood where they controlled vast portions of it, after that the organization started carrying out a counterattack, in which ISIS managed to restore areas and killed tens of members of the regime forces and the militiamen loyal to them, which pushed the latter to carry out a counterattack resulted in its control over the entire neighbourhood of al-Hajar al-Aswad, in addition to advancing and controlling more than 30% of Yarmouk Camp and also they attempted to advance in al-Tadamon neighbourhood, until today, 19th of May from 2018, the date in which a ceasefire took place between the regime forces and militiamen loyal to them of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities, and between members of the “Islamic State” organization, in the remaining section south of Damascus which is less than 70% of Yarmouk Camp, and a part of al-Tadamon neighbourhood, paving the way for reaching a full agreement for the exit and withdrawal of members of the “Islamic State” organization from the south of Damascus, towards another destination believed to be the Syrian desert.
Full month of violent battles, accompanied by intense shelling by the regime forces and its allies of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities, by rocket and artillery shelling, and by missiles believed to be ground-to-ground, amid bombardment by the warplanes and helicopter by the missiles, shells and barrel bombs, which caused great destruction in the property of citizens and infrastructure, where hundreds of buildings, houses and shops were destroyed, also the clash fronts and contact lines between both parties have witnessed exchange of targeting by missiles, shells and booby-trapped vehicles.
These violent clashes and intense shelling have caused casualties of civilians, fighters and members of the Organization and the regime forces and the militiamen loyal to them, where the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights documented the death of 56 civilians at least including 16 children and 7 women, the number of casualties who have been killed since the 19th of April 2018, in the shelling by the regime forces by artillery and rocket shells missiles believed to be ground-to-ground, and the bombardment by warplanes and helicopters by missiles, bombs and explosive barrels, while the number of casualties may increase because of the presence of tens of injuries and missing people, where a number of injuries have seriously wounded and others are in critical situations, while the fate of many of the missing people is still unknown, weather they have died or are still alive, where the citizens and rescuers try when the pace of shelling decreases, to extract stuck people or bodies from the rubble of destruction caused by the shelling on Yarmouk Camp and the rest controlled areas of the organization.
Also the ongoing fighting which is accompanied by intensive shelling between the both parties, resulted in increasing the number of human losses in ranks of the both parties due to the death of more members of the both parties, where it rose to 251 persons at least, of members of the regime forces and militiamen loyal to them of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities, who have been killed since Thursday the 19th of April 2018, including 31 officers and 9 of them were executed, while it has increased to 233, the number of members of the organization who were killed in the shelling, clashes and targeting that left tens of wounded in the ranks of the both parties, and the death toll is expected to rise because of the continued combat operations and the presence of injured cases in critical situation.