Observers from two organizations, the White Helmets and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), have reported that on the evening of June 7, aircraft from the Russian Air Forces launched an air strike against the Syrian village of Zardana in the province of Idlib, killing at least 44 people.
Eleven women and six children are among the dead, say the human rights activists. More than sixty people were injured. The number of victims may increase, as many of the wounded are in critical condition.
According to the White Helmets, the planes attacked a market near a mosque in Zardana.
The Russian Ministry of Defense traditionally refutes information reported by the White Helmets and SOHR and has stated that the Russian military did not strike at Zardana, calling the tragedy the result of an alleged confrontation between militants in the city itself.
On April 14, the leaders of three countries - the United States, France and Britain - issued a statement on the launch of a military operation in Syria. The coalition decided to launch strikes against targets suspected of involvement in the manufacture of chemical weapons.
Approximately an hour later, the first wave of attacks on Syria was announced; the Pentagon has not excluded the possibility that such an action may be repeated. The US did not warn Russia about the launch of the strike on Syria.
The operation in Syria was a response to the use of chemical weapons by Bashar al-Assad’s regime against the civilian population. The last attack, which occurred on April 7, killed about seventy people, most of whom are women and children.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed that Assad’s troops used chemical weapons in Douma. The WHO’s statement also includes data from volunteers about the deaths of seventy people who had been hiding from the bombing in basement shelters.