Between 14 and 16 civilians died including one woman and up to four children in alleged Russian airstrikes on Al Ghantu, according to local sources.
The Shaam News Network reported “an appalling massacre” in Al Ghantu, which killed 16 non-combatants including members of the civil defence who rushed to the location of the first raid when a second was launched in the same place, killing more people. It added that dozens were wounded, including some in critical condition, meaning the death toll was likely to rise. Activists told SNN that “the Russian air force targeted civilian houses in the town of Al-Ghantu with high explosive missiles leading to the fall of the buildings on the residents heads“.
However, according to initial reports by the Syrian Network for Human Rights, warplanes of the Assad regime carried out the attacks, killing at least 12. It published a graphic video showing bodies on the ground and men trying to identify them. Family members then arrived to find their dead.
According to another SN4HR report, one of the dead was Osama Al Khatteib, a member of the civil defence who “died in regime warplanes shelling on Al Ghanto town causing massacre, February 12.” This victim was also named by the White Helmets.
But in a later report by SN4HR, it appeared to change position and attribute the incident to Russia: “On 12 Feb 2016 alleged Russian warplanes shelled 3 rockets on the residential neighborhoods in Al Ghanto town in Homs suburbs that is under the control of armed opposition .which killed 16 individuals including 4 children and a woman.”
The Violations Documentation Center named 14 victims as being killed by Russia.
The local time of the incident is unknown.
The victims were named as:
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from sources (2) [ collapse]
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Russian Military Assessment:
Original strike reports
From February 10th – February 16th, Russia reported: “On February 10-16, aircraft of the Russian aviation group in the Syrian Arab Republic have performed 444 combat sorties engaging 1593 terrorists’ objects in the provinces of Deir ez-Zor, Daraa, Homs, Hama, Latakia and Aleppo.”