Hos­pi­tal hit again as Syria army presses Aleppo as­sault

The Myanmar Times - - World -

THE largest hos­pi­tal in rebel-held Aleppo was bombed for the sec­ond time in days as Syr­ian gov­ern­ment forces pressed a Rus­sian-backed of­fen­sive to re­take the en­tire city.

Aleppo, once Syria’s vi­brant com­mer­cial pow­er­house, is now at the heart of a ma­jor mil­i­tary cam­paign by Pres­i­dent Bashar al-As­sad’s fight­ers and his stead­fast ally Moscow.

The of­fen­sive, an­nounced on Septem­ber 22, has seen dozens of civil­ians killed and res­i­den­tial build­ings flat­tened in the east, where an es­ti­mated 250,000 peo­ple live un­der gov­ern­ment siege.

Diplo­matic ef­forts to end the fight­ing across the coun­try have all but col­lapsed.

How­ever, the for­eign min­is­ters of the United States and Rus­sia, which bro­kered a week-long truce deal that col­lapsed last month, spoke by phone on Oc­to­ber 1.

The for­eign min­istry in Moscow said on Face­book that Sergei Lavrov spoke to his Amer­i­can coun­ter­part John Kerry and they “ex­am­ined the sit­u­a­tion in Syria, in­clud­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of nor­mal­is­ing the sit­u­a­tion around Aleppo”.

It said “il­le­gal armed groups” con­tinue fight­ing in the city de­spite Rus­sian-US agree­ments.

As the sit­u­a­tion for civil­ians in Aleppo grows in­creas­ingly dire, the largest hos­pi­tal in the east of the city was hit by bar­rel bombs on Oc­to­ber 1, the med­i­cal or­gan­i­sa­tion that sup­ports it said.

That bom­bard­ment badly dam­aged the two fa­cil­i­ties and left only six fully func­tional hos­pi­tals in east Aleppo. The UN has called the at­tacks a war crime. –

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