The death toll from the air raids on a hospital in Idlib, in northwestern Syria in an area outside government control, has risen to at least 23 civilians, including several children. According to the pan-Arab television channel Al Arabiya, “Russian military aircrafts” have carried out several bombings on the Idlib public hospital. Early in the day, the toll provided by the National Observatory for Human Rights in Syria (ONDUS) was at 14 victims. ONDUS also states that the raids were carried out by “Russian aircrafts”.
It is not the first time that a civilian hospital has been hit in Syria by Russian aircrafts or Bashar Al Assad’s aviation. The most severe episode so far occurred in Aleppo, where a structure run by Doctors Without Borders was hit in April. There was also a pediatrician among the victims – over 20 people -, the last one operating in the eastern part of the great Syrian city. Aleppo is “on the brink of humanitarian disaster” – the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) warned. “Aleppo is another Sarajevo” – was the comment of UNICEF Italy. Whereas Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni expressed his concern “about the serious escalation of violence in Syria and in particular the indiscriminate aerial bombardments at the hand of the regime, which jeopardize the cessation of hostilities.”
The last few days have been tragic also for the population of another Syrian city, Raqqa, where Turkish Special Forces would be ready to intervene alongside their American counterparts to conduct an operation against the Isis stronghold. Yet, they will do so only if Kurdish-Syrian militias are left out of the operation, because the Turkish government considers them a terrorist organization, like PKK. US, on the other hand, supports the fight of the Kurdish-Syrian militias against the Islamic State.