Syrian Army to Lay Siege on Two Terrorists Strongholds in Eastern Ghouta
09 March, 2018, 10:27 | Author: Angel Logan
An aid convoy planned to bring assistance to besieged civilians in eastern Ghouta has been postponed, as monitors said a suspected chemical attack had hit the Syrian rebel enclave amid heavy fighting.
According to human rights groups, more than 900 civilians have been killed there in the last 18 days and the Red Cross has held back an aid convoy because of the intense fighting.
On Wednesday, government forces captured Beit Sawa, Al-Ashaari, and nearby farmland, the Britain-based Observatory said, putting them in control of more than half the territory once held by rebels.
Nearly 600 people are believed to have been killed and more than 2,000 injured since Syrian government forces launched an air and ground offensive on Eastern Ghouta on February 18, according to the United Nations.
In addition to the grim death toll, reports of malnourishment are rampant and many of Eastern Ghouta's residents are living in poorly equipped basements for some respite from almost incessant shelling.
Syria's ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, Hussam Aala, told the U.N. Human Rights Council on Thursday the assault targeted "terrorist organiZations in accordance with global humanitarian law".
About 100 people were killed Monday in Eastern Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus, making it the deadliest day there since the United Nations Security Council passed a nationwide ceasefire resolution on February 24, the Syrian American Medical Society said Tuesday in a statement. Many civilians have fled from the frontlines into Douma, a town in the enclave.
Until this week, the Syrian army - notably the elite Republican Guards and "Tiger" forces - had provided the ground units involved in the offensive in eastern Ghouta.
Washington accuses the Syrian government of responsibility, saying more than 1,400 people, including 426 children, died.
Turkey's state-run news agency said meanwhile that Turkish troops and allied Syrian opposition forces had entered the town of Jinderes, in the enclave's southwest, where they were engaged in street clashes with Syrian Kurdish forces.
"The fact is we have seen possibly the worst fighting ever in eastern Ghouta in these last 24 hours and in that kind of situation you can not deliver anything", Egeland said.
Eastern Ghouta was seized by militants in 2012.
At least 100 residents displayed symptoms of chlorine gas inhalation, the spokesman added.
"I'm going to suffocate", two children screamed as rescue workers carried them down from the roof.
Plans to send an aid convoy to Ghouta on Thursday were postponed, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the United Nations said.
"The entire city of Jandairis was liberated from the secessionist gangs", said the commander, who goes by the name Abu Saleh.
Wilson did not respond to questions as to who fired the gun, adding investigators have the firearm in their possession. Students were released and police are investigating the circumstances of the shooting, the statement said.
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