Syrian regime bombards Eastern Ghouta 'with burning napalm'

Syrian regime bombards Eastern Ghouta 'with burning napalm'
Casualties continue to rise in Eastern Ghouta despite the UN ceasefire resolution and the Russian 'humanitarian pause', with many civilians reportedly suffering burns from repeated napalm firebombing attacks.
2 min read
03 March, 2018
Wounded Syrian children lie in a makeshift hospital in Douma following airstrikes [Getty]
Civilians in Syria's besieged Eastern Ghouta have been burned by suspected napalm firebombing attacks, as more people were killed and injured by Syrian regime bombing and shelling on Saturday.

Five civilians, including a woman and child, were killed by regime bombardment on the towns of Muhammediyah and Hammouriyeh, according to Omar Khatib, al-Araby al-Jadeed's source inside the enclave.

A source from Ghouta's media centre told al-Araby al-Jadeed that Bashar al-Assad's regime launched over 30 airstrikes on the town of Douma between dawn and 8am on Saturday morning, critically injuring numerous civilians and damaging buildings.

They added that regime warplanes dropped burning napalm bombs on the town of Mesraba during the night and again in the morning, which inflicted numerous civilians with burns.

Napalm is usually made of jellied gasoline - a thickened incendiary petrol bomb that sticks to skin and clothes and can cause fourth to fifth degree burns. The UN has outlawed its use against civilian populations however the Syrian regime continues to use a host of chemical weapons against opposition-held areas in its blood-soaked bid to retake control over the country.

US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, has called on the Security Council to create a new inquiry to determine who is behind numerous chemical weapons attacks in Syria.
Eastern Ghouta - described as "hell on earth" by the UN chief - has been under a Russian-backed siege since February 18, which has claimed over 600 lives and injured thousands.

Neither the UN Security Council resolution calling for a 30-day ceasefire, nor the Russian-imposed five-hour "humanitarian pause" have done much to improve the situation in the rebel-held region east of Damascus.

Eastern Ghouta, the last rebel bastion near the capital, has been under a devastating regime siege since 2013, leading to chronic food and medicine shortages which have brought its 400,000 residents to the brink of starvation.

The Syrian conflict began when the Baath regime, in power since 1963 and led by President Bashar al-Assad, responded with military force to peaceful protests demanding democratic reforms during the Arab Spring wave of uprisings, triggering an armed rebellion fuelled by mass defections from the Syrian army.

According to independent monitors, hundreds of thousands of civilians have been killed in the war, mostly by the regime and its powerful allies, and millions have been displaced both inside and outside of Syria. The brutal tactics pursued mainly by the regime, which have included the use of chemical weapons, sieges, mass executions and torture against civilians have led to war crimes investigations.