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Explosion kills and injures dozens of civilians in Afrin; SNHR says that Syrian government continues to commit massacres as it demands to reduce sanctions due to COVID-19

Editing: Hosam Saleem |
TranslationEditor: Glory Jabr |
Translation: Muhammad Ghaith

Local and field updates:

On Tuesday, an explosion killed and injured dozens of civilians in the center of the Syrian National Army-controlled city of Afrin, 43 kilometers north of Aleppo, Northern Syria.

A medical source at the Military Hospital in Afrin reported to SMART that 27 bodies and 40 injured people arrived at the hospital. The source added that the explosion hit the al-Siyasiyah neighborhood. 

Eyewitnesses reported that a car bomb exploded near a fuel tanker in a crowded place; however, no official side has confirmed the reason behind the explosion yet.

On Tuesday, the Turkish police killed a Syrian young man in Adana, Southern Turkey. 

Adana state issued a statement saying that a police officer killed the Syrian man while the police were trying to stop him for violating the curfew imposed in Turkey due to coronavirus (COVID-19). The Turkish official media ignored the most important information in the statement. 

On Monday, a bomb explosion injured five people in the city of al-Bab, 38 kilometers east of Aleppo.

On Tuesday, a Turkish drone bombed a military headquarters of the Kurdish Autonomous Administration’s Asayish forces in the city of Ayn al-Arab (Kobani), 130 kilometers northeast of Aleppo. The bombing injured two Asayish members critically. The members were transported to Kobani hospital.


A medical source reported to SMART that new patients with COVID-19 entered the University Hospital in the Syrian government-controlled city of Aleppo, Northern Syria.

The Syrian government’s Health Ministry announced five cases of recovery from COVID-19. 

The Medical Directorate of the Salvation Government operating in the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS)- controlled areas established a medical center in the city of Idlib, Northern Syria, to quarantine Syrians who return or are deported from Turkey. The directorate established the center as a precautionary procedure against COVID-19.

The Jordanain Army aborted an infiltration attempt by people who tried to smuggle drugs and Hashish from Syria. 

On Tuesday, a Turkish military convoy entered Idlib from the Kafr Lusin border crossing.

The HTS prepared to open a trade crossing between its controlled areas and Syrian government-controlled areas, western Aleppo.

On Tuesday, oil tankers passed areas controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in the al-Hasakah governorate, Northeastern Syria, to Syrian government forces-controlled areas. The tankers passed by the al-Raqqa governorate, Northeastern Syria.

On Tuesday, the Syrian government limited restrictions of curfew procedures imposed to fight COVID-19 in the Syrian government-controlled areas. Some careers and trade shops resumed work in specific times and days of the week. 

On Monday, prices of materials continue to increase by 30 to 50 percent in most of Syrian governorates compared to Sunday. 

On Tuesday, residents in the city of al-Raqqa complained about consuming their savings that was allocated for future projects, gradually due to procedures of curfew imposed by the Autonomous Administration to fight COVID-19.

Political and international updates:

The Syrrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) said that the Syrian government continues to commit violations and crimes against Syrians. The SNHR added that despite its crimes, the Syrian government demands to reduce sanctions under the pretext of fighting COVID-19.

On Tuesday, the SNHR issued a report saying that the sanctions on the Syrian government is related to its ongoing violations. The report added that the sanctions do not include medical and food materials that are not distributed by the Syrian government.

The SNHR demanded Russia, Iran, and countries supporting the Syrian government to provide the latter with medical aid to fight COVID-19 instead of sending weapons and militias to kill Syrians. 

The report said that the Syrian government forces have killed 44 civilians, including six children in March and April 2020. The report added that the Syrian government forces arrested 156 people and destroyed four civil key infrastructure facilities, including two schools. The report stressed that the detainees in the Syrian government’s prisons are the most vulnerable to the risk of COVID-19.

On Monday, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said that COVID-19 increased the ordeal of asylum seekers who fled war in Syria. 

The UNHCR issued a statement saying that 170 countries closed their border completely or partially to contain COVID-19. The statement added that 57 out of the countries do not provide any exceptions for the asylum seekers whose lives and freedoms are endangered.

On Tuesday, the Iranian Health Ministry registered 71 new deaths from COVID-19, caused by SARS-CoV-2, bringing the total of deaths to 5,877.

On Monday, the Turkish Health Ministry registered 95 new deaths from COVID-19, bringing the total of deaths to 2,900.