Sunday, 24 June, 2018

Syrian government forces hit Ghouta despite ceasefire

Valeriy Sharifulin  TASS Valeriy Sharifulin TASS
| 03 March, 2018, 00:43

Affected volunteers receive treatment after a gas attack on al-Shifunieh village, in Eastern Ghouta. "The fighting must cease and aid agencies must be allowed to deliver lifesaving humanitarian assistance or more children will die", said Save the Children's Sonia Khush. "More, in other words, of the same".

Several attempts at a ceasefire in Eastern Ghouta have failed in recent days.

From 19th February to 26th February, Russia has made a lot of air strikes in Eastern Ghouta adjacent to the Syrian capital Damascus.

Even as "hundreds of rockets" from the east "had reportedly fallen on Damascus" since February 18, he said, "over 580 people" had been reported killed and "well over 1,000 injured" in government air and ground strikes on Eastern Ghouta over the same period, he said.

On the contrary, the bombings have continued, and deaths and wounded have mounted, he said, speaking at a monthly Security Council meeting devoted to the Syrian conflict.

Despite the step, the United Nations insisted that all sides must implement the 30-day truce demanded on Saturday, and said some 40 trucks loaded with aid were waiting for the violence to stop.

Syrian government forces have repelled three attacks carried out by militants during a humanitarian pause in Eastern Ghouta, spokesman for Russian center for Syrian reconciliation Maj.

Opposition activists said Wednesday's five-hour pause in eastern Ghouta was preceded by a barrage of airstrikes in the towns of Harasta and Douma, where Syrian troops and allied militia trying to push ahead with a ground offensive on a number of fronts from the east and west clashed with insurgent groups. "The EU will continue to play its part fully and to mobilise all political and humanitarian tools at its disposal", Mogherini said in the letter. "What we want is a full and permanent ceasefire for all of Ghouta", he said.


"We are supportive of the cease-fire, the cessation of hostilities with some conditions", he told reporters later. "Russian Federation does not get to unilaterally rewrite the terms of the resolution they negotiated and they sat here and voted for". So any type of feeling that the U.N.is frustrated: "Forget it", he said.

United States representative Kelley Currie accused the regime of violating the ceasefire, while Russian ambassador Vassily Nebenzia blamed the rebels. "We are criticized for humanitarian pauses". There are demands, demands, demands.

FILE - Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia speaks to reporters after attending a Security Council meeting, August 9, 2017, at U.N. headquarters.

Russian Federation called for the daily five-hour ceasefires starting Tuesday so aid could enter Ghouta, and civilians and the wounded could leave through a "humanitarian corridor".

Nebenzia accused council members of misinterpreting the resolution, saying pauses must be preceded by an agreement of the parties on the ground for de-escalation.

While Russia and the Syrian government say they are aiming at armed groups, who it refers to as "terrorists", civilian neighbourhoods and sources of livelihood have been attacked frequently.

"During the truce, the ceasefire is nearly enforced", said Syrian Observatory for Human Rights head Rami Abdel Rahman, adding that nine civilians were killed in strikes before and after on Wednesday.

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