Syria: Hundreds flee regime 'scorched earth' bombing of Idlib region

Syria: Hundreds flee regime 'scorched earth' bombing of Idlib region
The Syrian regime has attacked the Idlib town of Jabal Al-Zawiya over 60 times in three days, forcing hundreds of residents to flee.
2 min read
06 September, 2023
Syrian regime forces have been bombing the Jabal Al-Zawiya area of Idlib province for several days [Getty]

Hundreds of civilians have fled the Syrian rebel-held area of Jabal Al-Zawiya in southern Idlib over the past few days due to fierce regime bombing.

The Syrian Civil Defence, also known as The White Helmets, said that 60 attacks had taken place in the first three days of September and that eight civilians had been killed, while 23 had been injured.

The correspondent of The New Arab’s Arabic-language sister site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed said this was the worst bombing Jabal Al-Zawiya area had experienced in three years. One of the victims was a child, killed as his family tried to flee the shelling.

Syrian regime forces have adopted a "scorched earth" policy after rebel forces seized control of the Malaja hill in southern Idlib province a few days before, he said.

More than a thousand regime shells and bombs have rained down on southern Idlib province as of Tuesday, with such ferocity that the latest bombardment has prevented civilians from fleeing.

On Monday, two other children - who were sisters - were injured when shelling struck the refugee camp in Sarmin in eastern Idlib province, where they were sheltering with their family after fleeing the Jabal Al-Zawiya area.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that Russian warplanes had also bombed the village of Fatira in southern Idlib province as the regime shelled Jabal al-Zawiya province.

Idlib province is home to around 4 million people, nearly half of whom have been displaced from other parts of Syria by the Assad regime.

A ceasefire agreement brokered by Turkey and Russia has theoretically been in effect there since March 2020 but it is frequently violated by regime and Russian forces.

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Elsewhere in Syria, Turkish-backed rebel groups clashed with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in northern Aleppo province.

A correspondent for Al-Araby Al-Jadeed said that the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army bombed SDF positions near the city of Manbij east of Aleppo, prompting a response from the Kurdish-led group.

The SDF has also been clashing with Arab tribal militias formerly allied to it in Deir az-Zour in eastern Syria for the past two weeks, with scores of people being killed.

It said on Wednesday however, that it had “ended operations” against the militias.