Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

UNRWA official breaks down over Gaza deaths

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults - Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds' (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults - Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds'

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Renault's women drivers ad deemed sexist

Read more

FOCUS

Constitution prohibits Aung San Suu Kyi to run for president

Read more

THE BUSINESS INTERVIEW

War and Markets, with Steen Jakobsen, Chief Economist at Saxo Bank

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

France commemorates a hero of the left

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Diplomatic strain for John Kerry

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Germany and Russia 'discuss secret Ukraine deal'

Read more

  • French Jews speak of growing fear in Paris amid Gaza conflict

    Read more

  • Interactive: France’s new plan to counter jihadism in Africa

    Read more

  • US condemns school shelling as Israel calls up 16,000 more reservists

    Read more

  • Video: Inside Hamas ‘terror’ tunnels in Gaza

    Read more

  • France remembers murdered socialist hero Jean Jaurès

    Read more

  • Sierra Leone declares state of emergency over spread of Ebola

    Read more

  • Investigators reach MH17 site amid 24-hour ceasefire

    Read more

  • Air France ground workers to strike on August 2

    Read more

  • Scores feared dead in India landslide

    Read more

  • Russia ordered to pay further €1.9 billion to Yukos shareholders

    Read more

  • Iraq's Christians: Nowhere to Run?

    Read more

  • Russia defiant as US, EU unveil 'phase three' sanctions

    Read more

  • US House votes to sue Obama for over-reaching his powers

    Read more

  • Argentina fails to reach deal with creditors

    Read more

Middle east

US condemns 'barbarity' of Syria's barrel bombs

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-02-05

US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday condemned the "brutality" of the Syrian government under President Bashar al-Assad for its sustained barrel bomb campaign, which has already killed more than 150 people in Aleppo.

"Each and every day that the barrel-bombing of Aleppo continues, the Assad regime reminds the world of its true colors," Kerry wrote in a statement.

"It is the latest barbaric act of a regime that has committed organized, wholesale torture, used chemical weapons, and is starving whole communities by blocking delivery of food to Syrian civilians in urgent need."

More than 150 people have been killed in Aleppo, Syria's onetime economic hub and second city, over the past four days, in a string of barrel bomb raids and other air strikes, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

At least eight people, including five children, were the latest victims killed Tuesday when Syrian army helicopters unleashed a new wave of the bombs which Kerry said were "filled with metal shrapnel and fuel."

Barrel bombs, cheap and easy to construct and usually dropped from helicopters, often kill dozens at a time.

‘A horrific legacy,’ says Kerry

The bombs that fell Tuesday hit a mosque, which the Aleppo media center said was being used as a school. Syria’s civil war has killed more than 130,000 people and forced over 6 million from their homes.

"Given this horrific legacy, the Syrian people would never accept as legitimate a government including Assad," Kerry said, referring to peace talks due to resume in Geneva next week aimed at installing a transitional government in the war-torn country.

"While the opposition and the international community are focused on ending the war... the regime is single-mindedly focused on inflicting further destruction to strengthen its hand on the battlefield and undermining hopes for the success of the Geneva II process," Kerry said.

Fighting continues in Aleppo

Activists say that barrel bombs are being used to push people from rebel-held areas into state-controlled parts of the city.

“In recent days the flight of civilians has intensified and the regime has made some small gains,” said Rami Abdelrahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a pro-opposition monitoring group. “The main aid to their advance has been the rebel infighting.”

Other opposition sources deny government advances. Media access in Syria is severely limited by violence and government restrictions, making conflicting accounts difficult to verify. Aleppo has been divided since the rebels captured large swathes of the city in an offensive in the summer of 2012.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP and REUTERS)

 

Date created : 2014-02-05

  • DIPLOMACY

    Syria peace talks end with little progress

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French 'would-be jihadists' go on trial in Paris

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    Nothing ‘substantive’ achieved in Syria talks, Brahimi says

    Read more

COMMENT(S)