Between 12 and 20 civilians died and up to 21 more were wounded in an airstrike on a UN/Syrian Arab Red Crescent aid convoy (reportedly consisting of up to 12 trucks) in Urma al Kubra, Aleppo, according to local media – though sources were conflicted as to whether Russia or the Assad regime were to blame. Amnesty condemned the attack as “a flagrant violation of international law”.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights reported that “government helicopters and fixed-wing warplanes, believed to be Russian, took part in a concentrated attack that comprised multiple airstrikes on a center for the Red Crescent in eastern Urm Al Kubra town. The bombardment lasted for three hours.”
SN4HR went on to say that “government helicopters dropped no less than four barrel bombs while the fixed-wing Russian warplanes carried out nine airstrikes using missiles and heavy machine guns. The bombardment mostly targeted the Syrian Red Arab Crescent (SARC) center and destroyed a U.N. aid convoy of trucks that were supposed to deliver aid to warehouses belonging to the Red Crescent center. Additionally, the bombardment targeted also medical and civil defence teams who tried to rescue the wounded and injured relief workers.”
The relief trucks were from the Red Crescent organization and were staffed by volunteers. Multiple local and global media sources reported that the bombardment lasted roughly three hours, and only struck Red Crescent trucks and a Red Crescent supply center. LCCSY, for instance, stated that the warplanes “caused the burning of more than 20 trucks carrying humanitarian aid, and the destruction of the center.”
Step News Agency, who put the death toll at 12, said that all of the victims were “employees and volunteers” of the Red Crescent.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights published a report which argued that the strike was purposefully targeted: “The frequency of the strikes during the three hours, meaning that more than one missile was used and more than one strike were carried out so the attack wasn’t indiscriminate or by accident. In fact, four barrel bombs were dropped and the area was targeted with several missiles. Also, heavy machine guns were used to keep medics and civil defence teams away.”
Additionally, there was a statement by Mr. Stephen O’Brien, United Nations Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs, which said: “Notification of the convoy – which planned to reach some 78,000 people – had been provided to all parties to the conflict. So the Russian and Syrian regime were already aware of the place and the time at which the convoy was passing.”
The incident occured at approximately 7:30 pm local time.
- Abdul Rahman Mohammed Manafikhi Adult male killed
- Mohammad Bakri Sheikh Nasser Adult male killed
- Mohammad Mustafa Adult male killed
- Abd Aziz Abu Saud Adult male killed
- Abrahim Huzeina Adult male killed
- Amr Barakat Abu Sulaiman Adult male killed
- Ahmad Al Abed Adult male killed
- Omar Barakat Adult male Director of the Red Crescent center in Aleppo killed
Sources (49) [ collapse]
Russian Military Assessment:
Original strike reports
Russia has not reported any strikes between September 1st – 30th 2016.