US voices 'grave concern' over Idlib attacks

            By Michael Hernandez</p>  <p>WASHINGTON (AA) - The U.S. voiced &quot;grave concern&quot; Thursday over a series of attacks in northern Syria's Idlib province blamed on the Assad regime and Russia. </p>  <p>&quot;Despite Russia’s claims to be targeting terrorists, these operations have caused dozens of civilian casualties and have targeted first responders as they attempt to save lives on the ground,&quot; State Department spokesman Robert Palladino said in a statement. </p>  <p>&quot;These abhorrent attacks on civilian infrastructure and on settlements for internally displaced people must end now,&quot; Palladino added. </p>  <p>Along with regime artillery barrages, Russian SU-34 warplanes struck central Idlib and its rural outskirts, leaving 15 dead, including eight children, the White Helmets civil defense group said Thursday.</p>  <p>Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited, are believed to have killed at least 138 civilians since the start of the year.</p>  <p>Last September, Ankara and Moscow agreed to turn Idlib into a demilitarized zone following a meeting in Russia's coastal city of Sochi between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.</p>  <p>The U.S. warned that the latest spate of attacks risks destabilizing the surrounding region, thereby furthering Syria's humanitarian catastrophe. </p>  <p>&quot;As a party to the September 2018 Idlib ceasefire agreement with Turkey, Russia bears full responsibility for these offensive operations against northern Hama and southern Idlib,&quot; Palladino said. </p>  <p>&quot;We call on all parties, including Russia and the Syrian regime, to abide by their commitments and de-escalate violence in the area, protect all civilians, including humanitarian aid workers, and allow unhindered humanitarian access to address the humanitarian disaster created by the Assad regime’s forces,&quot; he added.

Attacks in Syria’s Idlib leave 15 dead: White Helmets

                            By Burak Karacaoglu and Esref Musa</p>    <p>IDLIB, Syria (AA) – Regime shelling and Russian airstrikes killed 15 civilians in Syria’s Idlib, the White Helmets civil-defense agency said Thursday. </p>    <p>Along with regime artillery barrages, Russian SU-34 warplanes struck central Idlib and its rural outskirts, leaving 15 dead, including eight children, the White Helmets said.</p>    <p>Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited, are believed to have killed at least 138 civilians since Jan. 1.</p>    <p>Last September, Ankara and Moscow agreed to turn Idlib into a demilitarized zone following a meeting in Russia's coastal city of Sochi between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.</p>    <p>Syria has only just begun to emerge from a devastating conflict that began in 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on demonstrators with unexpected severity.
  • Writing by Maimaitiming Yilixiati

White phosphorus bomb attack in Syria: White Helmets

             </p>                <p>By Burak Karacaoglu, Esref Musa and Levent Tok</p>  <p>IDLIB, Syria (AA) – The Bashar al-Assad regime forces attacked southern Idlib with a white phosphorus bombs, forbidden as weapon, according to the White Helmets civil defense agency.</p>  <p>Mustafa Haj Yousuf, head of the White Helmets in Idlib, told Anadolu Agency regime forces deployed in Abu Dali village in Hama province and Iran-backed foreign terrorist groups, attacked southern Idlib with white phosphorus bombs.</p>  <p>“The attack was carried out twice. In both of them, some 40 bombs loaded with white phosphorus were thrown,” Haj Yousuf said, adding his group failed to get any casualty information till now.</p>  <p>Use of white phosphorus, which can be clearly seen in the footages obtained by Anadolu Agency, is forbidden under international law.</p>  <p>Phosphorus, which poisons the person when inhaled, causes major damage to the brain and lungs and leads to death.</p>  <p>The area targeted by the bombs are mostly evacuated due to intensified regime attacks in the region. It is estimated that the bombing would have caused no casualty.</p>  <p>The regime had last used white phosphorus bombs last March in Eastern Ghouta.</p>  <p>Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone are estimated to have killed at least 124 civilians -- and injured more than 362 others -- since the beginning of 2019.</p>  <p>In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn Idlib into a demilitarized zone after a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his counterpart, Vladimir Putin, in Sochi, Russia. </p>  <p>Ankara and Moscow signed a memorandum of understanding calling for the stabilization of the situation in Idlib's de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are prohibited. </p>  <p>Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity. </p>  <p>Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million others displaced, according to UN officials.</p>  <p> </p>  <p>*Writing by Sena Guler</p>  <p> 

3 civilians killed in regime attacks in Syria’s Idlib

              By Esref Musa and Burak Karacaoglu</p>  <p>IDLIB, Syria (AA) – Three civilians were killed early Monday in attacks by regime forces and Iran-backed terrorist groups on areas of Syria’s Idlib governorate, according to the White Helmets civil defense agency.</p>  <p>Mustafa Haj Yusuf, head of the White Helmets in Idlib, told Anadolu Agency the regime and its supporters directed intense artillery fire against areas of opposition-held Idlib, including the town of Khan Shaykhun and city of Saraqib, killing three civilians and injuring 14 others, including women and children.</p>  <p>On late Sunday, four civilians were killed in attacks by regime forces and Iran-backed terror groups on residential areas in Syria's northwestern Idlib late Sunday, according to the White Helmets civil defense agency. Regime forces also attacked a center of the White Helmets in Idlib, killing a civil defense worker.</p>  <p>A day earlier, a volunteer was killed when another White Helmets center was hit by a warplane belonging to Russia, according to the opposition. </p>  <p>Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone are estimated to have killed at least 124 civilians and injured more than 362 others since the beginning of 2019.</p>  <p>In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn Idlib into a demilitarized zone after a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his counterpart Vladimir Putin in Russia's coastal city of Sochi. </p>  <p>Ankara and Moscow signed a memorandum of understanding calling for the stabilization of the situation in Idlib's de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are prohibited.</p>  <p>Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011 when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity. </p>  <p>Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million others displaced, according to UN officials.

Regime forces hit civil defense center in Syria's Idlib

By Esref Musa, Burak Karacaoglu and Levent Tok

IDLIB, Syria (AA) – Syria's Bashar al-Assad regime and Iran-backed terror groups attacked a center of the White Helmets civil defense agency in northwestern Idlib on Sunday, killing a civil defense worker, according to local sources.

The attack was carried out in Marek district, which is located inside the Idlib de-escalation zone.

The civil defense center was heavily damaged and became unusable as a result of the attack, the sources said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

On Saturday, a volunteer was killed when another White Helmets center was hit by a warplane, which belonged to Russia, according to the opposition.

Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone are estimated to have killed at least 117 civilians — and injured more than 342 others — since the beginning of 2019.

In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn Idlib into a demilitarized zone after a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his counterpart Vladimir Putin in Russia's coastal city of Sochi.

Ankara and Moscow signed a memorandum of understanding calling for the stabilization of the situation in Idlib's de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are prohibited.

Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million others displaced, according to UN officials.

  • Writing by Fatih Hafiz Mehmet

4 civilians killed in airstrike in Syria's Idlib

By Esref Musa and Burak Karacaoglu

IDLIB, Syria (AA) – At least four civilians were killed in an airstrike in Syria’s northwestern Idlib on Saturday, according to the White Helmets civil-defense agency.

Mustafa Haj Yousuf, head of the White Helmets, told Anadolu Agency that a warplane targeted the civil-defense team which was conducting search and rescue efforts in Idlib's Jisr al-Shughur district where was hit by an earlier attack.

Four people, including a civil-defense volunteer, were killed, while two other civil-defense volunteers were heavily injured, Haj Yousuf said.

The SU 34 Russian warplane took off from Khmeimim air base, according to a statement of the opposition’s plane observatory.

  • Regime forces continue attacks

The Bashar al-Assad regime and its Iranian-backed terror groups continued heavy bombardment in residential areas of Idlib since early Saturday.

The warplanes of the al-Assad regime also started airstrikes in the evening hours.

Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone are estimated to have killed at least 116 civilians — and injured more than 342 others — since the beginning of 2019.

In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn Idlib into a demilitarized zone after a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his counterpart Vladimir Putin in Russia's coastal city of Sochi.

Ankara and Moscow signed a memorandum of understanding calling for the stabilization of the situation in Idlib's de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are prohibited.

Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million others displaced, according to UN officials.

  • Written by Sena Guler

UPDATE – Regime shelling kills 2 civilians in Syria's Idlib

            UPDATES DEATH TOLL; CHANGES TITLE, LEDE</p>    <p>By Burak Karacaoglu and Esref Musa</p>    <p>IDLIB, Syria (AA) – At least two civilians were killed and four others injured when Syrian regime forces and Iran-backed militias shelled positions in Syria's northwestern Idlib province, the White Helmets civil-defense agency said Friday. </p>    <p>Assad forces and Iran-backed terror groups intensified their attacks in residential areas southeast of Idlib, Mustafa Haj Yusuf, head of the White Helmets in Idlib, told Anadolu Agency. </p>    <p>“The situation is generally very bad. At least 60 rocket attacks were carried out in Khan Sheikhun [a town in Idlib]. The attacks are ongoing,” Yusuf said, adding that at least two civilians had been killed and four others injured by the attacks. </p>    <p>Yusuf also said that residential areas in Hama province were being attacked by regime forces. </p>    <p>Regime attacks in Idlib’s de-escalation zone are estimated to have killed at least 100 civilians -- and injured more than 300 others -- since Jan. 1. </p>  <p>The fresh wave of attacks in Idlib has reportedly led to a new refugee exodus from the towns of Khan Sheikhun and Maaret al-Numan.</p>    <p>Since February, nearly 6,900 families have migrated to safe areas near Turkey's border. </p>    <p>Located in northwestern Syria near the border, Idlib has designated a de-escalation zone -- in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited -- in May of last year. </p>    <p>Syria has only just begun to emerge from a devastating conflict that began in 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on demonstrators with unexpected severity.

Suicide attack kills 7 in Syria’s Idlib: White Helmets

            By Burak Karacaoglu and Esref Musa</p>    <p>IDLIB, Syria (AA) – At least seven people were killed in a suicide attack in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province, the White Helmets civil-defense agency said Friday. </p>    <p>Dozens of others were injured when a suicide bomber blew himself up outside a restaurant on Friday evening, Mustafa Haj Yousuf, the White Helmets’ director in Idlib, told Anadolu Agency. </p>    <p>No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack. </p>    <p>Located near the Turkish border, Idlib was designated a “de-escalation zone” -- in which acts of aggression are expressly forbidden -- in May of last year. </p>    <p>Continued regime attacks in the Idlib de-escalation zone are estimated to have left at least 94 civilians dead, and more than 290 others injured, since Jan. 1. </p>    <p>The attacks have led to a fresh refugee exodus from Idlib’s cities of Khan Shaykhun and Maaret al-Numan. </p>    <p>Since February, nearly 6,900 families have migrated to safe areas and camps near the Turkish border. </p>    <p>Syria has only just begun to emerge from a devastating conflict that began in 2011 when the Assad regime cracked down on demonstrators with unexpected severity.

Regime attacks kill 3 civilians in Syria's Idlib

By Esref Musa and Burak Karacaoglu

IDLIB, Syria (AA) – Three civilians were killed in fresh regime attacks in northwestern Syria's Idlib province on Monday, according to the White Helmets civil defense agency.

Regime warplanes and artillery bombarded the southern rural area of Idlib's de-escalation zone, Mustafa Haj Yousuf, the White Helmets director in the province, told Anadolu Agency.

"Three people, including two children, were killed and three others injured when rockets struck the town of Hobait," he said.

Regime attacks in the de-escalation zone of Idlib are estimated to have killed at least 80 civilians and injured more than 200 people since the start of this year.

The attacks in the southeast Idlib have led to a new wave of migration from the cities of Khan Shaykhun and Maaret al-Numan.

Since February, nearly 6,900 families have migrated to safe areas and camps near to Turkey's border.

Located in northwestern Syria near the Turkish border, Idlib was designated a “de-escalation zone” in May last year where acts of aggression are expressly forbidden.

Syria has only just begun to emerge from a devastating conflict that began in early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on protesters with unexpected ferocity.

5 civilians killed by regime shelling in NW Syria

              By Esref Musa and Burak Karacaoglu</p>    <p>IDLIB, Syria (AA) - At least five civilians were killed in artillery shelling by Bashar al-Assad regime forces and Iran-backed militias in northwest Syria on Saturday, according to the White Helmets civil defense agency.</p>    <p>The attacks targeted the city of Khan Shaykhun in Idlib and northern regions of Hama, said Mustafa Haj Yousuf, the White Helmets official in Idlib.</p>    <p>He said four other civilians were also injured in the shelling.</p>    <p>Regime attacks in the de-escalation zone of Idlib are estimated to have killed at least 80 civilians and injured more than 200 people since the start of this year.</p>    <p>The attacks in the southeast Idlib have led to a new movement of migration from Khan Shaykhun and Maaret al-Numan.</p>    <p>Since February, nearly 6,900 families have migrated to safe areas and camps near to Turkey's border.</p>    <p>Located in northwestern Syria near the Turkish border, Idlib was designated a “de-escalation zone” in May where acts of aggression are expressly forbidden.</p>    <p>Syria has only just begun to emerge from a devastating conflict that began in early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on protesters with unexpected ferocity.