Global Voices

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Assad Wages Chemical Warfare on Al Ghouta, a Damascus Suburb

Hundreds of people, mostly children and women, were killed this morning when Bashar Al Assad's forces attacked the Ghouta region, east of Damascus, Syria, reportedly with nerve gas, say activists.

Horrible footage of dying (and dead) children are plastered across social media, calling for the world to break its silence on the atrocities being committed against civilians in Syria.

On Greater Syria, Enas, a Syrian in Amman, Jordan, writes:

At around 3:00 a.m. in the morning, regime’s forces fired rockets with chemical heads on Zamallaka and on Al Zainia area in Ein Turma. Jobar district was slightly affected by as the gases were driven to it by the wind. A big number of civilians were consequently subjected to the gases, leading to the martyrdom of tens of them. Up until now, primary reports from makeshift hospital of Arbeen (where victims were taken) report 41 martyrs fell (22 children, 11 women, 8 men), 5 other martyrs were taken to Douma, 40 martyrs documented by videos in Saqba, and at least 20 martyrs inside Ein Turma itself. Most activists report that death toll amounts to more than a 100 up until now. Many of the martyrs are children, seen in videos below suffocating to death.

Enas's post provides links to photographs and videos [Warning: Graphic] showing the unfolding tragedy.

Enas adds:

Symptoms of the patients include nausea, hallucinations, suffocation, hard coughing, high blood pressure, seizures, during affection and post-death gargle, etc. Still, no clue of the chemical weapon/toxic gas that was used by the regime’s forces to target the innocent civilians.

Families are fleeing the targeted areas to Saqba and several other nearby areas as reported by activists there as they are utterly horrified. Activists also report the lack of Atropine that is usually used to treat civilians during chemical attacks by the regime; oxygen tanks are not available too. Medics are only using vinegar to the mouth and nose and are washing the bodies of the victims by water.

The number of those killed has been on the rise since. Hala Droubi offers another toll:

And others put the toll at over 635 so far:

Mohannad shares a photograph from a field hospital in Daraya, where he says there isn't room to treat more of those injured:

And he challenges the media to break the wall of silence on atrocities being committed in Syria:

Enas shares her pain:

She adds that the bombing followed the victims, taken to nearby Erbin, for treatment:

For more on the tragedy, follow the hashtag #CWMassacre on Twitter.

via Global Voices » Feature

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