Disinfo: Syrian army does not shell civilians in Idlib

Summary

The Syrian army in Idlib is targeting the terrorist sites with the aim of neutralising their terrorist activities, and is not bombing the civilian population.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation trying to absolve the Syrian army of any responsibility for possible war crimes.

The UN Human Rights chief Michelle Bachelet described the attacks in northeastern Syria aimed at retaking key areas in Idlib and Aleppo as both "indiscriminate" and "inhumane".

“Civilians fleeing the fighting are being squeezed into areas without safe shelter that are shrinking in size by the hour. And still, they are bombed. They simply have nowhere to go,” Bachelet said.

From 1 to 16 February, the UN Human Rights Office recorded at least 100 civilian deaths, including 18 women and 35 children, and many other civilians were injured as a result of the air-strikes and ground-based strikes by government forces and their allies. In total, since the start of 2020, the UN Human Rights Office has recorded the deaths of 298 civilians in Idlib and Aleppo. Around 93 percent of those deaths were caused by the Syrian Government and its allies, including Russian airstrikes. In addition, 10 medical facilities and 19 educational facilities were either directly hit or affected by nearby strikes. According to UN estimates, more than 900,000 people, of whom about 80 percent are women and children, have been displaced since 1 December 2019. This is the largest displacement of people since the conflict began in 2011. Many displacement camps were directly and indirectly hit by government and pro-government forces.

See a case here on how the Syrian army had never used chemical weapons in the Syrian conflict and how the Russians never target civilian populations deliberately.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 188
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/02/2020
  • Language/target audience: Arabic
  • Country: Syria
  • Keywords: Syrian War
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Disproof

This case adds a new spin to the Kremlin's disinformation campaign to discredit the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) inquiry into the downing of the flight MH17.

The disinformation message refers to newly-released documents from 2016, possibly pertaining to the JIT investigation, that allegedly contradict its findings. According to Russian investigative journalism site the Insider, the documents in question list the coordinates of the points where the Ukrainian and Russian Buk-M1 systems known to intelligence had been located and conclude that none of them could have brought down the Malaysian airliner. However it is not an exhaustive list of BUK missiles that could have been located in the area of the disaster. See further reporting by the Insider. 

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Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative undermining the statehood of Ukraine.

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Disproof

This case adds a new spin to the Kremlin's disinformation campaign to discredit the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) inquiry into the downing of the flight MH17.

The allegedly leaked documents do not contradict the findings of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT). According to the Russian investigative journalism site the Insider, the documents list the coordinates of the points where the Ukrainian and Russian Buk-M1 systems known to intelligence were located and conclude that none of them could have brought down the Malaysian airliner. However it is not an exhaustive list of BUK missiles that could have been located in the area of the disaster. See further reporting by the Insider.