Missile attack kills 3 civilians in Syria de-escalation zone

ANADOLU AGENCY
DAMASCUS
Published 23.09.2017 19:22
Updated 24.09.2017 13:43
Civil defense workers evacuate victims from the rubble of a destroyed building following air strikes on the Eastern Ghouta town of Douma, on January 10, 2016. (AFP Photo)
Civil defense workers evacuate victims from the rubble of a destroyed building following air strikes on the Eastern Ghouta town of Douma, on January 10, 2016. (AFP Photo)

At least three civilians were killed and several injured in a missile attack Saturday in a Syrian city that falls within a network of "de-escalation zones" -- places said to forbid such attacks -- according to a pro-opposition Syrian civil defense official.

The attack -- blamed on Syrian regime forces -- took place in the opposition-held Ain Tarma district of Eastern Ghouta, which is located inside a de-escalation zone, Moustafa Alaa, a member of Syria's White Helmet civil defense forces, told Anadolu Agency.

"The regime forces launched missile attacks on residential areas in the Ain Tarma district. Three civilians were killed and 15 others were injured," Alaa said.

For the last five years, Eastern Ghouta has remained under siege by the Assad regime.

During peace talks held in Astana, Kazakhstan in early May, Eastern Ghouta was designated part of a network of de-escalation zones in which acts of aggression would be expressly forbidden.

A first round of peace talks was held in the Kazakh capital Jan. 23-24 after a ceasefire was hammered out Dec. 30.

The Astana talks are being brokered by Turkey, which backs the Syrian opposition, along with Russia and Iran, both of which support the Assad regime.

Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and more than 10 million displaced, according to U.N. officials.

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