AMMAN/ HONG KONG, 30 April 2014 – UNICEF is outraged by the latest wave of indiscriminate attacks perpetrated against schools and other civilian targets across Syria which left dozens of children killed and injured.
Tuesday 29 April witnessed at least three attacks, beginning in the Damascus suburb of Al-Shaghour, where mortar shells killed and injured students at the Badr Al Din Al Hussein technical institute. Reports say 14 children were killed and more than 80 others were injured in the attack.
Another mortar attack in A’dra area of Rural Damascus reportedly killed three children at a shelter for internally displaced families. Later, a car bomb exploded in a busy part of the city of Homs, reportedly causing the deaths of at least 100 people including many women and children. More than 100 people were also injured.
“Every day, across Syria, children who are simply trying to go about their everyday lives are being killed and maimed by indiscriminate attacks on populated areas”, said Maria Calivis, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa.
“These attacks appear to be escalating, in complete disregard of all the calls that have been made to stop this insane cycle of violence, and to avoid similar breaches of international law.”
With the Syria conflict now well into its fourth year, airstrikes, often including the use of so-called barrel bombs, and artillery barrages, mortars, and car bombs are targeting populated areas all over the country.
Such attacks on populated areas are prohibited under international humanitarian law.
UNICEF calls on all parties to the conflict in Syria to immediately cease all attacks against civilians and to fully respect the special protection afforded to children under international humanitarian and human rights law.