Russian Attacks on Syria’s Civilians Intentional and Premeditated

In a letter to the Security Council transmitted on Friday 19 February, the Syrian National Coalition’s President Khaled Khoja condemned Russia’s latest attacks on Aleppo and its deliberate targeting of Syrian hospitals, medical facilities and schools, and demanded the immediate withdrawal of Russian forces from Syrian territory:

“Russia’s attacks on Syria’s hospitals and schools were intentional and pre-meditated.  All of the hospitals’ locations were well-known and well-documented, and their civilian character was abundantly clear to Russian authorities.  The decision to target Syria’s medical infrastructure—in spite of (or more accurately, because of) the vital services they provide—represents a deliberate strategy on Russia’s part to destroy civilian life in opposition-held areas, and to render these areas uninhabitable. The attacks almost certainly constitute grave war crimes”, stated President Khoja.

In his letter to the Security Council, President Khoja called on Member States and the United Nations to:

i.          Launch an investigation into Monday’s attacks on medical facilities and schools in northern Syria, and ensure that the investigation attributes responsibility;

ii.         Demand the immediate exit of Russian forces from Syrian territory;

iii.        Protect civilians from future indiscriminate strikes by Russia and Syrian regime forces, including by enforcing a no-bombing zone across Syria;

iv.        Ensure accountability for all war crimes committed by referring the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court, launching a case under universal jurisdiction, or taking measures to establish an independent international criminal Tribunal for Syria.

To read President Khoja’s letter to the Security Council in full, click here.

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National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces
Committed to a free, democratic, and pluralistic Syria.