Syria, an old ordnance kills one child and injures another

An unexploded grenade on the battlefield An unexploded grenade on the battlefield Photo by specnaz-s on iStock

03 March 2021 

A landmine explosion killed one child and injured another in Deir ez-Zor, Syria.

On 3 March 2021, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported the death of a child and the injury of another, due to a landmine explosion. The tragic episode took place in Deir ez-Zor and it is the latest in a series of similar accidents in other Syrian areas such as Homs, Hama, Aleppo and southern Syria.

The landmine had been left in this area by the Islamic State. Indeed, back in December 2019, when the Syrian conflict was affecting mainly northern Syria, the province of Deir ez-Zor was one of ISIS’ strongholds. The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) managed to conquer the territory, but ISIS kept operating in this area thanks to the loyalty of the tribesmen of the territory . According to SOHR statistics, in February 2021 the SDF arrested 69 people for “belonging and dealing with ISIS” in the Deir ez-Zor countryside.

Due to the resurgence of ISIS, local populations - especially women and children - keep being victims of explosions: SOHR has documented 451 fatalities (including 72 women and 145 children) since January 2019 to date. Landmines, unexploded bombs and the collapse of war-damaged residential buildings continue to be a major threat for local people in Syria.

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Author: Laura De Pascale; Editor: Catherine Meunier

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