المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

Massacre in Taftanaz town leaves 9 casualties including children, raises number of killed and injured people to 40 in a series of airstrikes on towns and cities near al-Fu’ah and Kafriya

Bombardments continue on the northeastern countryside of Idlib city, targeting towns and cities near al-Fu’ah and Kafriya towns, which are inhabited by Shiite citizens in the same countryside, as well as other areas in the countryside of Idlib, where the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored the warplanes targeting again areas in Binnish city, in conjunction with airstrikes targeted areas in Taftanaz town and Kanisat Bani Ezz in Sahl al-Rouj in the southwestern countryside of Idlib, which caused more civilians casualties and increased the number of people who were killed by the aerial bombardment today, where it rose to 11, the number of people whose death was documented by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, they are 9 casualties including 3 children –and information about the presence of a woman among them– were killed in the massacre that took place in Taftanaz town, and a child girl was killed in the raids that targeted Binnish, and a young man was killed in the raids on Ram Hamdan town, while about 29 people were injured in the air raids on Binnish, Taftanaz, Ta’oum, Ma’arrat Mesrin, Ram Hamdan, Ariha, and Kanisat Bani Ezz, and the death toll is expected to rise because there are some people in critical situation, also the raids that targeted Taftanaz have caused the children’s Hospital in the city to get out of service, as a result of the material damage in the hospital’s building and equipment caused by the raid on the hospital area, also the helicopter dropped barrel bombs on places in al-Najeya area and Mar’aand in the western countryside of Jesr al-Shughur city which caused material damage, but no information about casualties so far.

These airstrikes on the area come hours after the most violent attack in 3 years on the towns of al-Fu’ah and Kafriya, which are inhabited by Shiite citizens in the northeastern countryside of Idlib city, where the Syrian Observatory published this morning that 6 members at least of the pro-regime gunmen were killed in the towns of al-Fu’ah and Kafriya, after violent shelling and clashes between them against Saraya Darayya Gathering, Jaysh al-Ahrar, Uzbek and Turkestani fighters, and other factions in the vicinity of both towns in the northeastern countryside of Idlib city, also the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights received confirmed information that members of the attacking factions were also killed as a result  of these clashes and shelling, and the death toll may rise because there are some seriously injured persons. This attack is the most violent on since almost 3 years, it also comes after less than 72 hours on Zradna Massacre in which the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights documented the death of 51 persons at least, including 9 children under the age of eighteen and 11 woman, which is the largest massacre in 2018.

It worth mentioning that both towns are witnessing a siege by the rebel and Islamic factions since 2015, where they are considered the last besieged areas in Syria outside of the “Islamic State” organization’s areas of presence, and the aid is delivered to both town by baskets thrown by helicopters.

Also the town witnessed back in May 2018, several rounds of violent clashes and intense shelling by the rebel and Islamic factions which caused casualties, in addition to the occasional targeting by the snipers, also both towns witnessed during the past years evacuations of thousands of fighters and civilians of their residents, through agreements with the Syrian opposition parties, during which demographic change took place through transferring the residents of al-Fu’ah and Kafriya with the fighters, coincided with displacing thousands of Syrian civilians and fighters to areas in the Syrian north.

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