Russia bombs Idlib to mark 7th year anniversary of bloody Syria intervention

Russia bombs Idlib to mark 7th year anniversary of bloody Syria intervention
Russia has killed thousands of Syrian civilians in airstrikes, following its devastating intervention in the country's war.
2 min read
30 September, 2022
Russian bombing of Syria has killed thousands of civilians [Getty]

Russian planes bombed towns and villages in Idlib and Aleppo again on Friday, marking the seventh year anniversary of Moscow's bloody intervention in the Syria war.

Al-Ruwaiha, south of Idlib, and Darat Izza, west of Aleppo, were targeted in Russian airstrikes and Syrian regime shelling on Friday according to The White Helmets.

It follows a week of heavy bombing of northern Syria by the Russian air force, causing injuries and displacing families.

Earlier this week, Russian air strikes close to IDP camps at the Bab Al-Hawa border crossing, sent children and women fleeing, in another reminder of Moscow's air power and willingness to target civilian areas.

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Russia's Syrian intervention on 30 September 2015 led to the survival of the Assad regime, but at a devastating cost for civilians.

Seven years of Russian bombing has killed 6,943 civilians including 2,044 children, the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) reported this week.

The report highlights the lack of action by the West in stopping Russian aggression, which escalated the violence and gave President Vladimir Putin carte blanche to target schools, hospitals, and bakeries - tactics he has since repeated in Ukraine.

"The West issued zero sanctions against Putin despite the violations committed by Russian forces in Syria, which amount to crimes against humanity and war crimes," SNHR executive director Fadel Abdul Ghany told The New Arab.

"That encouraged Putin to escalate the violence, shelling more hospitals, killing more civilians... Russia did not pay any price for seizing Syria, with zero sanctions and the condemnation was not on the scale of the Russian crimes."

Zero repercussions for Russia's blatant targeting of civilians led Putin to feel he had little to fear from the West and the invasion of Ukraine was a natural consequence of this, Abdul Ghany said.

"That is what encouraged Putin to continue his crimes in Syria, to block a peaceful solution to the war and eventually to the invasion of Ukraine. He did not expect a reaction from the West like he did," he added.

The White Helmets civil rescue group have responded to 5,245 air strikes, 320 cluster bombs, and 131 incendiary weapons in opposition areas of Syria since the Russian intervention in 2015.

Analysts have noted an uptick in the Russian bombing of Idlib since Moscow's humiliating losses in Ukraine earlier this month.