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Alep – Massive bombings against civilians


The eastern districts of the city of Aleppo, in the north of Syria, have been the target of sustained bombing for almost two weeks now. The damage to the civilian population is truly devastating. According to the United Nations, 320 civilians have been killed, including around one hundred children. Prohibited weapons, including cluster bombs, have been used.

A Child victim of a bombing supported by Handicap International

Handicap International once again calls for an immediate end to this bombing of civilians which has reached new and frightening levels. The indiscriminate or deliberate targeting of civilians is a violation of international law.  The repeated attacks on hospitals and relief workers are entirely unacceptable.

In recent months, the organisation has been running a campaign condemning the use of explosive weapons in populated areas [Lien petition], which sadly is common practice in ongoing conflicts in Syria, Afghanistan, Yemen, Ukraine etc. In 90% of cases the victims of this barbaric practice are civilians.

When used in populated areas, explosive weapons kill and cause serious injury and suffering (burns, open wounds, fractures etc.). They result in disability and psychological trauma. Using weapons in this way leads to mass population displacement and destroys vital infrastructure including houses, schools and hospitals.

During the bombing, some munitions will not explode on impact. These unexploded munitions remain a threat to the civilian population long after a conflict has ended.  The presence of explosive remnants of war makes it dangerous for people to return to their homes once an attack or the conflict is over.

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Idleb - The risk of a humanitarian disaster Emergency

Idleb - The risk of a humanitarian disaster

While a major military offensive on Idleb region is possibly under preparation, HI calls on parties to the conflict to spare civilians and allow full and unfettered humanitarian access.

A frightening increase in the number of victims of explosive weapons
(c) E. Fourt/HI
Explosive weapons

A frightening increase in the number of victims of explosive weapons

On the occasion of the International Day for Mine Awareness, HI is alarmed by the frightening increase in the number of civilian victims of explosive weapons : 32,008 civilians were killed or injured by explosive weapons in 2016 (out of a total of 45,624 victims), according to Action on Armed Violence (AOAV). The toll looks even heavier for 2017, as civilians account for 90% of the victims of explosive weapons when they are used in populated areas. Landmine Monitor has recorded a dramatic increase in casualties of mine and explosive remnants over the past three years. Syria, Afghanistan, Libya, Ukraine and Yemen are among the main countries affected.

Humanity & Inclusion condemns unending bombardment of besieged Eastern Ghouta Emergency

Humanity & Inclusion condemns unending bombardment of besieged Eastern Ghouta

The extreme escalation of bombardment in the besieged area of Eastern Ghouta in the past 72 hours has caused more than 200 civilian deaths and extensive damage to infrastructure—particularly hospitals, clinics, and shelters where civilians are taking refuge. 390,000 civilians are besieged under heavy shelling, airstrikes, and barrel bomb attacks in the enclave of Eastern Ghouta, with dwindling water, food, and medical supplies.