A red cross on a truce: what will the attack on the convoy in Syria


In the night from 19 to 20 September in Syria came under fire from a convoy of humanitarian assistance to the joint UN and the Syrian branch of the red Crescent society (red cross). About it to Agency Reuters has informed a press-Secretary of the UN Stefan Dujarric. According to the organization, came under fire from 18 trucks bound for the Syrian town of URM al-Kubra is located in the South of the province of Aleppo with humanitarian aid. The red Cross said that the shelling killed about 20 civilians.

After the incident, the UN has suspended the delivery of humanitarian assistance in Syria.

Mutual accusations

Exactly who attacked the convoy, is still unclear, the responsibility for the attack on any one of the warring parties themselves have not taken. Under part 2 of article 8 of the Rome Statute of the International criminal court the intentional infliction of harm to personnel and vehicles involved in a humanitarian assistance is a war crime. “If it is proved that the attack is not anybody’s mistake and was done intentionally, then it can be considered a war crime,” explains the Professor of international law Department of MGIMO Dmitriy Labin.

With comments about the incident were made by Russia and the United States. “U.S. outraged by reports of the attack on a humanitarian convoy near Aleppo”, — said the representative of the state Department of the USA John Kirby. “Given the flagrant violation of the truce, we will conduct a reassessment of the prospects for cooperation with Russia,” — said Kirby.

US officials pointed directly at the perpetrators. But U.S. Secretary of state John Kerry indicated Moscow on the necessity of more careful control over the actions of the Assad regime, “which is inaudible all fires, including humanitarian convoys.” “The Syrians had not entered into agreements. They entered into Russia. And now we wait to see what they will declare,” — said the Secretary of state. Kerry urged not to rush things and first to gather all the facts about the incident before making any conclusions, now the United States “isn’t all full of facts.”

Press Secretary of the President Dmitry Peskov also urged not to do hasty conclusions and to wait for the results of the investigation. “At the moment, information about this test firing our military and I hope they will receive specific information, from primary sources, and will be able to speak with the appropriate statement,” concluded Sands. He also added that despite the agreement, the U.S. military failed to carry out the disengagement of terrorists and the moderate opposition. “Hope for the resumption of the truce very weak,” — assessed the prospects of the agreements of the Sands.

“To accuse any side in the attack of a humanitarian convoy to Syria is premature,” — quoted the press Secretary of the office for the coordination of humanitarian Affairs Jens Lerche “RIA Novosti”. According to Lerche, the UN said Russia and the United States about the fire and waiting for the investigation of the incident.

The movement of humanitarian convoys filmed Russian unmanned aerial vehicle, the video provided by the defense Ministry of Russia Today. The drone recorded the situation in Syria within three days.

According to him Labin from MGIMO, the responsibility for the humanitarian convoy lies with the government, if it is proved that the territory which was a part of the convoy is under the control of other forces. But this does not remove the responsibility from those who control this territory — group or state patrons, the expert adds. According to the Carter Center, which monitors the movement of groups in Syria, on 20 September the territory of the town of URM al-Kubra was under the control of the opposition. Kirby noted that the Syrian government has denied transit of humanitarian cargo to 19 September. By words a press-the Secretary of the IFRC, Damascus knew where the convoy and issued a permit.

Step back

The ceasefire, which on 9 September agreed Kerry and Russian foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, acting in Syria since September 12. Monday night about the withdrawal from the ceasefire, said the command of the Syrian army. In an official statement published on the website of the government Agency SANA, said that terrorist groups during the week, 300 times opened fire. The announcement of the truce occurred after coalition aircraft led by the United States, struck several blows on the government armies the city of Deir AZ-Zaur.

Simultaneously with the shelling of the convoy, the government troops clashed with the militants “Dzhebhat Fattah al-sham” (the former “dzhebhat an-Nusra”, banned in Russia) to Aleppo. According to the Russian Center reconciliation of the warring parties in Syria, the militant group launched an offensive on the South-West of the city, trying to break the ring of government troops. Fighting for military schools and the district 1070, suspended during the truce, was resumed.

Witnesses reported a bombing in the Northern province of Hama and in the Northern province of HOMS under opposition control, video of the fighting posted on Youtube.

One of the attacks of the Syrian army reported the Syrian civil defense (White helmets). The employee said that helicopters of the Syrian army in half an hour after the announcement of the withdrawal from the truce 4 dropped improvised “barrel bombs” on the warehouse of the Syrian red Crescent, located in the village of Yelling.

“Everything goes to the fact that the parties of the negotiation process in Syria took a step back” — explains the situation head of the Agency “Foreign policy”, program Director of the Valdai club, by Andrey sushentsov. In his words, to predict the further development of the situation around the agreement between Russia and the United States is almost impossible. “The deal between Kerry and Lavrov was introduced as a durable solution, as a new stage of negotiations. Now the question of the truce broke, — the expert believes. But the parties stated that the transaction was cancelled, paying attention Sushentsov.

The situation shows that the talks between Kerry and Lavrov failed in the last round, says the head of the St. Petersburg centre of studying of the modern Near East Gumer Isaev. He draws attention to the fact that the talks will be followed by a phase of hostilities. “When negotiations start to arrange parties, will regroup and continue fighting. Negotiations are used as a respite, a pause to regroup,” says the orientalist.

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