In what was described as a “massacre”, Russian or Assad-waged aerial and artillery shelling killed up to 35 civilians, including at least seven children, and wounded dozens in Kafar Batna, eastern Ghouta, Damascus, as reported by local media.
As eastern Ghouta continued to be under heavy aerial shelling, the strikes in Kafar Batna town was described as particular intense by local sources, where residential buildings were struck and left in complete rubble.
The death toll spanned from ten, as initially reported by Zaman al-Wasl, to as many as 35. The latter reported by Step News Agency on the following day, February 22nd. Many sources reported “at least” 20 fatalities, including children. Step News Agency reported exactly seven child fatalities.
Additionally, several sources reported that the incident had wounded “dozens”. Damascus Media Center added that most were children.
Besides from airstrikes, the launch of explosive barrels from helicopters was also widely reported among the sources, including Orient News correspondent and Wesal TV.
But sources where not clear who to blame.
While most reports, including al-Jazeera and Orient News, identified the Syrian regime as the culprit, Step News Agency reported, as the only one, that “Russian warplanes and helicopter gunships launched dozens of air strikes and explosive barrages” in several parts of eastern Ghouta, including Kafar Batna. In another tweet about the specific strikes in Kafar Batna, Step News blamed both the Syrian regime and Russia.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
Sources (14) [ collapse]
Russian Military Assessment:
Original strike reports
Russia has not reported any strikes between February 1st - 28th 2018.