This Administration's remarkable indifference to ongoing aerial attacks only perpetuates Syrian suffering and further empowers the Assad regime and its allies to act with impunity.
Washington, DC (PRWEB) January 11, 2016
On Saturday, January 9th, Russian planes flying over ISIS-free Idlib province bombed a humanitarian field office belonging to the Syrian Emergency Task Force (SETF), a member of CDS. Thankfully, no staff was injured, but the facility and equipment were completely destroyed. From this office, SETF staff work tirelessly to document war crimes, host civil society workshops, and distribute humanitarian aid provided in part by the United States. Also on Saturday, in the town of Ma'aret al-Nauman, Russian strikes targeted a civilian court and a road leading to a market killing at least 40 civilians according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
CDS calls on the Obama Administration to act immediately to protect defenseless civilians and U.S. implementing partners from such devastating aerial attacks. During the President's tenure, these attacks have become commonplace, leaving Syrians without any means to protect themselves. Since October, Russian bombs have killed hundreds of civilians, destroyed dozens of schools and hospitals, and forced tens of thousands to flee. CDS condemns Russian airstrikes in Syria, which not only displace huge numbers of Syrian civilians and destroy civilian and humanitarian infrastructure but also provide air cover to Hezbollah and pro-regime militia offensives in the liberated areas of Syria.
"This attack on a humanitarian field office and surrounding civilian areas is yet another in a string of despicable violations of international law," said SETF Executive Director Mouaz Moustafa. "This Administration's remarkable indifference to ongoing aerial attacks only perpetuates Syrian suffering and further empowers the Assad regime and its allies to act with impunity."
While indiscriminate aerial bombardment is the largest cause of civilian deaths, it is also vital to note the victims of the slow collective punishment campaign of government-induced famine in Madaya and other besieged towns.