Syria Daily: Russia-Regime Continue Bombing Despite Talks



UPDATE 1700 GMT: The Local Coordination Committees reported that more than 50 people have been killed in and near Aleppo today, almost all by Russian-regime airstrikes and shelling.

An LCC correspondent said more than 30 people were killed and dozens injured in bombing of houses in Oweijel, west of Aleppo. Another 14 died and dozens were injured in the Marja district in the city.

UPDATE 1530 GMT: Images of al-Qaterji in Aleppo after the latest Russian-regime bombing:



(Photos: Karam al-Masri/AFP)

Aftermath of airstrikes on Jisr al-Shughour in Idlib Province:

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Despite the resumption of international talks over Syria’s crisis, Russia and the Assad regime are continuing their bombing of civilians in and beyond Aleppo.

Russian warplanes reportedly knocked out yet another medical facility, this time in Latamneh in northern Hama Province, killing five civilians and injuring medical staff. Pro-Assad airstrikes targeted Aleppo districts such as al-Qaterji and Sheikh Fares.

The Local Coordination Committees documented 51 deaths in Aleppo Province yesterday, most of them from the Russian-regime airstrikes. The victims included a family of two men, four women, and eight children.

Since a renewal of bombing on September 19, beginning with the destruction of a UN aid convoy, the attacks have killed more than 600 civilians.

Allegations are circulating that Sunday’s strikes on Latamneh in Hama Province included chlorine canisters, leading to suffocation among civilians.

Russia has defied international calls to cease the bombing, vetoing a UN Security Council resolution nine days ago. France has said that Moscow is complicit in the regime’s “war crimes”, comparing the attacks to the destruction of Spain’s Guernica by German bombers in 1937.

The US said earlier this month that it would suspend contacts with Moscow because of the airstrikes. However, Washington convened a multilateral conference, which included the Russians, in Lausanne, Switzerland.

There was no advance in the discussions, but Russia used the event to relieve political pressure. Its shifting of emphasis to “separation” of rebels from the jihadists of Jabhat Fatah al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra) — who in fact have few fighters in Aleppo — was supported by Iran, the Assad regime’s other main ally, and by Turkey, which has been a leading backer of the Syrian opposition and rebel factions.

Volunteers rescue a boy in Aleppo’s al-Qaterji district on Sunday night — he survived after treatment in hospital:

European Powers Seek More Sanctions on Regime

Britain, France and German said on Sunday that they will seek more European Union sanctions on the Assad regime, while condemning the Russian bombing and pressing for humanitarian aid to Aleppo.

The trio will discuss the situation at a meeting of EU Foreign Ministers in Luxembourg on Monday.

“It is vital that we keep that pressure up,” British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said following a meeting in London yesterday with US Secretary of State John Kerry. “There are a lot of measures we’re proposing, to do with extra sanctions on the Syrian regime and their supporters, measures to bring those responsible for war crimes to the International Criminal Court.”

A draft diplomatic statement condemns the “catastrophic escalation” of the Russian-regime attacks in an attempt to overrun the opposition areas of Aleppo city. It says that airstrikes on hospitals and civilians “may amount to war crimes”, and calling on the Assad regime “and its allies”.

Diplomats said the EU will also call for a ceasefire with an observation mission, inclusion of EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini in political talks, and immediate access for an EU aid package announced on October 2.

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson takes part in a meeting on the situation in Syria at Lancaster House in London

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson at Sunday’s meeting in London (Justin Tallis/Reuters)

Britain, France, and Germany are going beyond the draft by calling for economic sanctions on about 20 more Syrians, suspected of directing attacks on civilians.

They would be added to the EU’s existing sanctions list of about 200 Syrians, an oil and arms embargo and a ban on dealing with the Syrian Central Bank.

However, the three powers have not mentioned any limited intervention for protected zones, or even a suspension of Russian and regime military overflights.

Paris and London said on Thursday that they may push other EU leader to consider travel bans and asset freezes on as many as 12 Russians involved in the Syrian conflict.

However, that is not on the agenda for Monday.

Senior Hezbollah Commander Killed in Aleppo

A senior Hezbollah commander, Hatem Hamadeh, has been killed in Aleppo.

A pro-Hezbollah outlet announced the death on Sunday. Another statement of the “martyrdom” said Hamadeh was the “deputy official of the Radwan Forces”, Hezbollah’s elite special operations unit.

Another outlet, Mulhak News, said the commander was killed in the 1070 Apartment Projects, on the front southwest of Aleppo city, by an improvised explosive device that struck the vehicle in which he was travelling. Another field commander and a number of Hezbollah fighters were injured.

Mulhak said Hamadeh was a close associate of Ali Fayyad, a high-ranking Hezbollah official better known as “Alaa Bosnia” who has led a number of the party’s military operations.


Zabadani Council: Glass Shards, Bird Droppings in Aid Delivery

The local council of besieged Zabadani, northwest of Damascus, has said that the most recent delivery of UN food aid contained rice “unsuitable for human or animal consumption”.

The council said that the bags of rice, sent on September 25, contained pieces of glass and bird dung. It asserted that 65% of the 2-ton delivery was not edible.

The council said it notified the manager of the office of UN envoy Staffan de Mistura, but Hezbollah militia surrounding the town prevented a team from entering to take samples.

Zabadani has been besieged since July 2015, when the Syrian military and Hezbollah launched an 86-day offensive to take the town. The offensive could not quell resistance, but the siege has continued of Zabadani and nearby Madaya, where scores of residents have starved to death.

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  1. Despite the resumption of talks, Yankistan and its cohorts continue in good faith to deliver aid and comfort to their JI-Joe proxies … so what’s new?

  2. It took days to take over Ramadi, Raqqa, Mosul, Palmira and Koubane. It will take months to liberate these places, and it will cost in many deaths and huge destruction.
    Conclusion is, never let Islamists the chance to settle and root. Uprooting Islamists is very costly.

    • Go and tell it Assad and Putin. Both have changed Syria into a terror factory of islamists.

      Additional – is there any difference between Putin/Assad and Daesh? Assad & Putin are the preconditions that Daesh was able to conquer big parts of syria.

      The Syrian security services are no strangers to the double game of strategically supporting terrorists. During the Iraq War, Assad let jihadis cross from Syria into Iraq to kill American soldiers and Iraqi civilians. Mowaffak al-Rubaie, a former Iraqi national security advisor, recently said that prior to the Syrian uprising, he presented Assad with “material evidence, documents, satellite pictures, [and] confessions” proving that the Syrian security agencies were directly supporting the jihadi insurgency in Iraq. That insurgency, of course, was led by none other than al Qaeda in Iraq, the predecessor of the Islamic State.

      Islamists have to leave when the Syrian war is ending.,But reality is that this war will never end as long as Assad, Putin & Khamenei remains at the helm of the state.

      All 3 are the precondition that syria is partly a playground of islamic terrorists.

      • Go and tell it Assad and Putin. Both have changed Syria into a terror factory of islamists.

        The US had all 12 leaders fo ISIS in Camp Bukka in Iraq and released them.

        Assad & Putin are the preconditions that Daesh was able to conquer big parts of syria.

        Rubbish. It was only after Russian got involved that Daesh tatted getting clobbered and their oi convoys got destroyed

        The Syrian security services are no strangers to the double game of strategically supporting terrorists.

        How funny you should make that claim the same week that Hillary’s emails reveals Qatar and Saudi Arabia are the ones financing Daesh.

        During the Iraq War, Assad let jihadis cross from Syria into Iraq to kill American soldiers and Iraqi civilians.

        It was the US invasion of Iraq that created Al Qaeda in Iraq and later Daesh.

        As usual, you have it 100% wrong Gunny.

  3. Britain and France sought to persuade the European Union on Monday to condemn Russia’s devastating air campaign in Syria and impose more sanctions on al-Assad’s government,

    EU foreign ministers met in Luxembourg to call for an end to the bombing of rebel-held east Aleppo, where 275,000 people are trapped, and to rush humanitarian aid into the city.

    “The pressure (on Russia) must be strong,” France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said. “The more the European Union shows unity and determination, the more we can move forward in what is a moral obligation: to stop the massacre of the population of Aleppo,” he told reporters.

    • Britain and France sought to persuade the European Union on Monday to condemn Russia’s devastating air campaign in Syria and impose more sanctions on al-Assad’s government,

      Sounds like the collapse of the EU and NATO is accelerating.

  4. Tensions are rising between Russia and the west.

    “Putin may calculate that a US administration that has refused to take military action against the Assad regime since 2011 is unlikely to reverse course in President Obama’s last few months in office.”

    “But if the Russians push too hard, they could miscalculate and provoke an American reaction. That is particularly the case because the Obama administration is angered by Russian cyber warfare, aimed at influencing the US presidential election. Joe Biden, the vice-president, has already signalled that America intends to retaliate in cyber space.”

    The Russians may also feel that the next few months offer an opportunity in eastern Europe and Ukraine, with the EU distracted by Brexit and the run-up to the French presidential election. Moscow had hoped that, by now, the EU would have eased the economic sanctions that were imposed in the aftermath of Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.

    Instead, the west has collectively strengthened its stance by moving more Nato troops into the Baltic states that border Russia.

    There was to be a “reset” that would lead to better relations with Russia. There would also be a new and closer working relationship with China. And there would be an end to war in the Middle East. None of those policies has come to fruition. Instead, Obama will be fortunate if he can negotiate his last three months in office without presiding over a major international crisis.

    After the Trump melodrama and the transition to the President Hillary Clinton hard times will come to Putin.

    The overture for the coming cold war could be todays decission at Luxemburg for new Sanctions for Putin and Assad.

    • EU foreign ministers met in Luxembourg condemns Russian air strikes on eastern Aleppo, says hospitals deliberately targeted.

      • Clinton would probably be “open to a serious examination of limited military steps designed to exact a price for and deter mass murder” by Assad’s forces, but cautioned that her options would ultimately be determined by conditions in spring 2017:

        Moscow and Tehran understand this. This is why they seek a military victory for Assad now, while the White House is paralyzed. They assume, of course, that Obama will remain inert no matter what they and their client regime do.

        • Clinton would probably be “open to a serious examination of limited military steps designed to exact a price for and deter mass murder” by Assad’s forces, but cautioned that her options would ultimately be determined by conditions in spring 2017:

          In other words, those pinning their hopes on Killary are in for a major disappointment.

  5. 1. Yanki warcrims now openly confess their strategery for Mosul entails pushing IS into SAA holdout of Deir Ezzor, which they so recently bombed ‘by mistake’:
    2. They also demonstrate to the inept Assad how to do airstrikes in densely populated urban areas the human-rights-friendly way, i.e. 2000 lbs at a time:
    3. Tayyip’s chaps were lurking about [at Bashiqah] to keep the western escape route clear, prevent PKK spoilers, but it appears they have just been surrounded by ISF/PMU on first day of action … FWIW, Abadi has said they are to treated as another enemy:
    4. In other news anathema to all NATO-conform agit-prop slingers, Egypt invited Ali Mamlouk, the Syrian Mukhabarat chief, to meet Generalísimo Sisi’s deputy chief of Intel Khaled Fawzi and other senior security officials in Cairo — they agreed to coordinate their political stances and cooperate on security:
    [ Sauds must be having a conniption fit about now … ]

    • Warcrimes of Russia at Syria:

      Russia is guilty of committing some of the most “egregious” war crimes seen in decades.

      The leading human rights organisation said Moscow’s air force has not only been targeting civilians and aid workers in Syria over the last week, but that warplanes have been deliberately attacking those attempting to treat the victims.

      Tirana Hassan, director of Amnesty’s crisis response programme, told Sky News: “We’ve documented strikes on schools, strikes on hospitals and civilian homes. And one of the most egregious parts of what Russia and the Syrian forces are doing is that they’re bombing these civilian targets when it itself is a war crime.

      “But then they’ve been looping around – and this is a consistent report, that there are second bombardments – which are then injuring and killing humanitarian workers and just civilians who are going in to evacuate the wounded and the dead.”

      The Kremlin has in the past rejected suggestions that it has intentionally been hitting civilian zones, insisting that it is only dropping bombs on terrorist targets. Russian president Vladimir Putin’s official spokesperson denied the country is guilty of war crimes, dismissing them as “unfounded accusations”.
      Read more

      German chancellor Angela Merkel’s has called for a “no-fly zone” in order to prevent air strikes by all the opposing sides.

      Andrew Mitchell, a Conservative MP and former International Development Secretary, said earlier this week that Russia’s air strikes on hospitals and a school were “certainly a war crime”.

      But Mr Mitchell said there was “effectively nothing we can do at the moment but they can be held to account in the future.”

      Russia is one of the only countries to openly support the Syrian President, who the West wants to see permanently removed to usher in a new government and end the bitter civil war.

      More than half of Syria’s population has been displaced over the course of the conflict – amounting to around 12 million people

        • Do you have anything else more to throw at us instead of your usual 2 cents lefitish rethorics? Kind of getting bored in reading the same book after 5 yrs.

  6. Rojava hosts thousands of displaced Iraqi civilians as war on ISIS intensifies 10/17/2016

    Rojava is taking refugees from all parts of Syria. Due to the embargo on both the Turkish and Iraqi sides of their border, they can’t get supplies, food, seeds, clothes or medical equipment. 9/19/2016

    #SRO – ESSENTIAL MAP TO UNDERSTAND N-#ALEPPO ! The map you need to understand who can go or can’t go… #Russia, #Syria, #US, #Turkey 10/16/2016

  7. Yanki Brain-Bugs, you have 8 hours to evacuate your precious JI-Joes from E.Aleppo on Thursday, otherwise don’t come crying when the curtain drops [EU & UN already welcomed the idea]:
    Also, in what promises to become the new definition of implausible deniability, The Psycho-HoseBeest‘s minion Podesta has been caught out admitting Saud & Qatari régimes under Yanki tutelage providing ISIS ‘financial and logistical support’ as part of joint warcriminal régime-change plot against Damascus:
    In reaction, the enraged warcrims have lashed out and cut Assange’s wifi, but a little too late 😀

  8. A long way from home. There’s probably a growing numbers folks within Hezbollah who are not happy with Nasrallah and his Iranian masters. He might/should be getting nervous. The casualties for such a small population has to be felt almost in every corner of the Lebanese Shia community. Hezbollah started as an indigenous guerilla force fighting the occupying Israelis and their Lebanese (christian) allies in southern Lebanon. Arguably a noble cause. But, their mission has morphed into something else. They are the bad guys in Syria, and it might be a fatal mistake.

  9. EU divided and sidelined, again, on Russia
    Syrian crisis hijacks this week’s Brussels summit debate on keeping in place sanctions against Moscow.
    EU leaders had planned to use their fall summit this week in Brussels to clarify their approach to Russia.
    Scratch that.

    The fast-worsening relationship with Moscow looks to be increasingly out of Europe’s control — driven by events on the ground in Syria and by the United States, which now, as much as ever, is speaking for the West.

    Any chance that Thursday’s scheduled dinner-time discussion would set a path toward easing sanctions against Russia over Ukraine has been erased by the outrage over Russia’s bombing of Aleppo. And while some EU leaders are expected to push for new sanctions over Syria, officials concede it will be virtually impossible to reach consensus on new punitive action.

    Instead, the 28 leaders will be left to ponder if they want Europe to continue to play a supporting role to America. That, in turn, is leading Moscow to point the finger of blame back at Europe for the recent deterioration in relations.

    “The lack of European independence================
    is one of the most pervasive subjects of complaints=====
    in the Russian foreign policy,” said Maxim Samorukov===
    , an analyst at the Carnegie Moscow Center.==========
    “Russia constantly claims that the Europeans, under pressure of Cold War inertia, continue to excessively rely on U.S. patronage, that they do not formulate, let alone defend, their own national interests.”

    Lavrov-Kerry show

    This weekend offered the latest example of an EU sidelined on Russia and left to follow the U.S. lead.

    On Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met in Lausanne, Switzerland, with the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, after announcing on October 3 that the United States had broken off bilateral talks with Russia because of the carnage in Aleppo. Officials from Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey also attended.

    European powers, however, were excluded. EU officials conceded that any hope for a breakthrough in Syria meant relying on Kerry. “We have to trust the judgment,” one EU diplomat said. “Because we have got nothing else.”

    “We would wish the European Union to be strong, united, and more independent in its decision-making” — Vladimir Chizhov, Russian ambassador to EU

    Kerry flew to London on Sunday to brief his counterparts from the U.K., France and Germany. There, Kerry and the British foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, raised the possibility of sanctions against Russia over Syria, insisting all options are on the table.

    The divisions within the EU and the lack of support on either side of the Atlantic for any expanded, coordinated military intervention in Syria made the threat sound hollow.

    Sanctions rethink

    Thursday’s dinner conversation in Brussels was scheduled after repeated demands by some EU leaders, principally Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, for a proper debate on longer-term Russia policy. These more dovish voices on Russia in the EU wanted to avoid another quick renewal of sanctions and at least set the stage to ease them, if not this week then at some point down the road.

    Last month, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said that there were at least five European countries eager to end the economic sanctions imposed after Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula in 2014. Biden didn’t name names,
    but Austria, ==
    Cyprus, =====
    Italy, ========
    Greece, =====
    Hungary and==
    Slovakia are among the countries that have expressed opposition to the sanctions.
    Officials planning the summit say the conversation will almost certainly turn to recent events, including the bombing of Aleppo, Russia’s provocative military maneuvers in Europe and concerns about the Kremlin’s support for far-right political parties in the EU. The sanctions discussion has been pushed further down the agenda by Syria.

    Russian officials said the Syria situation was being misrepresented to destroy any chance that European leaders would end the sanctions, which Russia regards as illegal because they were not approved by the United Nations Security Council.

    “I am sad and disappointed that Russia-EU relations are becoming hostage to yet another international crisis, not only the Ukrainian one but also the Syrian one,” Vladimir Chizhov, Russia’s EU ambassador, told POLITICO in a telephone interview.

    Chizhov said Europe was making a mistake by walking in lock-step with Washington. “Speaking on behalf of my country, we would wish the European Union to be strong, united, and more independent in its decision-making,” he added.

    In Washington, Russia’s gripes about a lack of European independence are dismissed as little more than self-interested whining, part of a not so-hidden agenda to divide the EU and strain trans-Atlantic relations. Earlier this month, Kerry gave a speech in Brussels about the importance of the Euro-Atlantic alliance.

    ‘Lost for words’

    In a sign of how bad things have gotten between the two, Putin last week canceled a planned trip to France after Hollande suggested he might snub the Russian leader. There have also been calls in some Western capitals for Russia to be formally charged with war crimes.

    Even without the Syria and Ukraine crises, Europe’s relations with Russia are complicated by an array of tangled strategic and economic interests, many tied to energy and Russia’s role as a major gas supplier to the Continent.

    But items like these will remain on the back burner given the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Syria.

    European diplomats will first discuss the Russia-Syria issue at a meeting in Luxembourg Monday, followed by the leaders’ dinner on Thursday.

    Ukrainian officials insist that recent events in Syria are finally forcing the West to confront Russia’s true nature, leaving little to talk about.

    “Unfortunately, the tragedy that is happening in Syria is just proving the arguments that Ukraine has been putting forward,” said Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, Ukraine’s vice prime minister for European integration.
    Many European officials seem dismayed, but also flummoxed about how to deal with the Kremlin.

    “We’re all pretty lost for words on a kind of personal and an emotional basis about what’s going on — it’s the worst bombardment yet on Aleppo and other cities; unprecedented suffering,” one EU diplomat said. “It’s just an appalling, appalling, appalling situation.”

    “Russia has a critical role in this,” the diplomat said. “So there is a really important question of where we go now … What can we do? How can we increase the pressure in particular on Russia and obviously on the regime?”

  10. As one JFS leader after another is converted into chop-suey …

    … their fearless Ozzie spokesman smells the wind*, cancels his Inspire subscription** and bravely applies for a position with the BBC:
    [* from an Angel of Death hovering nearby]
    [** ]

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