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Syrian government forces bombing causes casualties in Idlib and Hama; Clashes kill and injure HTS and NLF members in Aleppo

Editing: Amena Riyad |
TranslationEditor: Vera Halvorsen |
Translation: Maan Salti
Publication date: 2019/01/01 11:03

Field and local developments:

On Monday, a Syrian government forces bombing on the perimeter of the town of Has in Southern Idlib, Northern Syria, killed a child and injured five civilians.

Obaydah Othman, the head of a Civil Defense center, told SMART that the bombing targeted a camp for displaced people near Has, killing a child and injuring five civilians. Activists said that one of the civilians' arms had to be amputated.

The opposition faction Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) arrested the brother of the Abu Hamzah al-Noaymi Gathering's commander along with seven Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters displaced from Quneitra to the Idlib governorate.

Local sources told SMART that the HTS released the FSA fighters, but continued to arrest the commander's brother, whom the HTS arrested 10 days earlier in the HTS-controlled town of Killi, Northern Idlib.

On Tuesday, clashes between the HTS and the Nour al-Din Zinki Movement affiliated with the National Liberation Front (NLF) were resumed in Western Aleppo.

Local activists told SMART that the clashes between the two parties were renewed after the HTS mobilized its forces and sent reinforcements to the city of Darat Izzah and the villages of Taqad, Tarmanin, and Khan al-Assal in Western Aleppo, in an attempt to gain control of the area. The clashes killed two civilians and injured several others.

Local activists also told SMART that HTS members stormed Darat Izzah and clashed with members of the Nour al-Din Zinki Movement, killing a nurse and injuring three medical workers in the city's Kinanah Hospital. Clashes between the two parties also injured several civilian on the perimeter of the city.

In Central Syria, a Syrian government forces artillery and missile shelling killed a civilian and injured another in the city of Mourik, 27 kilometers north of Hama, while a similar shelling targeted other villages and towns in the area.

The Syrian government forces shelled the Mourik Grand Mosque with missiles from locations in the cities of Souran and Tall Bazam as worshippers performed the night prayer, according to local activists. The shelling injured a civilian and killed another in a fatal heart attack.

In Northeastern Syria, a convoy of about 20 military trucks suspected to carry logistics aid arrived at the United States military base in the town of Ayn Issa, 48 kilometers north of al-Raqqa.

A Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) media source and another from the Asayish forces' checkpoint security force, said on Monday that the convoy arrived at the US base in Ayn Issa on Sunday evening, without specifying the cargo it carried.

International and political developments:

Kuwait said that it is expected for more Arab countries to reopen their embassies in the Syrian government-controlled city of Damascus in the coming days.

On Monday, the Kuwaiti Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled al-Jarallah stated to the Kuwaiti News Agency KUNA that Kuwait will remain committed to the Arab League's decision and will reopen its embassy in Damascus once the organization allows it.

Also on Monday, the International Federation of Journalists issued a statistic report of media personnel killed around the world in 2018, ranking Syria as the fourth most dangerous country for journalists.

The federation's report mentioned that 94 journalists from around the world were killed on duty in 2018. The number of killed journalists increased significantly compared to the year before, when 82 journalists were killed.