Putin in Syria: Heavy Civilian Casualties As Aleppo Pounded With Bombs And Shells

December 9, 2015
Aftermath of an air strike in Aleppo's Salheen district today. Screenshot from Syrian Civil Defence video

The previous post in our Putin in Syria column can be found here.

Heavy Civilian Casualties As Aleppo Pounded With Bombs And Shells

Russian jets are reported to have bombed Aleppo today, killing at least 9 people and wounding dozens.

According to the Syrian Local Coordination Committees (LCC), a 9-month-old child was killed when the northern suburb of Anadan was bombed this morning. The town has been a repeated target of Russian air strikes. 

To the southwest of the city centre, Russian jets bombed the Salheen neighbourhood, apparently striking a bakery.

According to the LCC, eight people were killed and 15 wounded. Syrian Civil Defence (known as the White Helmets) report “more than 10” killed

The air strikes were accompanied by heavy shelling by Syrian regime forces. The LCC reports that tanks shelled the eastern Sakhour neighbourhood while mortars were used to pound al-Ameria and three areas near Nile Street in the northwest.

Three people were reported to have been killed and several wounded in these attacks.


Meanwhile fighters from the Free Syrian Army set off a tunnel bomb under a regime-controlled building in the al-Khalidiya district of the northwest:

On December 7, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) reported that the humanitarian situation in the Aleppo are was growing even more dire, especially since Russia began bombing the roads between Aleppo and the town of Azaz on the Turkish border.

The main road from Kilis in Turkey to Aleppo, a key supply route into eastern Aleppo, is close to being completely cut off from humanitarian aid. “In the past few days, several convoys have been bombed, and last Thursday a truck on the way to pick up winter kits to families in Aleppo was fired on,” says Francisco. Over the weekend, MSF had to halt the transportation of kits to some 40,000 people in eastern Aleppo.  “This route brings most of the the food, fuel and humanitarian aid for some 600,000 people living in Azaz district and the east of Aleppo city,” says Francisco.

Carlos Francisco, the coordinator of MSF projects in northern Syria, warned that the organisation may be forced to close their hospital in the province, “which is assisting some 50,000 people,” may be forced to close.

Medical facilities are also being directly targeted. In October alone, MSF documented the bombing of 12 hospitals in northern Syria. 

— Pierre Vaux