Syrian air force raids IS-held Raqqa, killing civilians

ARA News

Raqqa, Syria – Six children were reported dead on Sunday morning as pro-Assad warplanes bombed residential neighbourhoods in the city of Raqqa, in northern Syria.

Raqqa province is considered the main stronghold of extremists of the Islamic State (IS), an al-Qaeda offshoot.

Local sources told ARA News that five children were killed in Sabahiya neighbourhood in Raqqa, while another one lost his life in Akeshi town in Raqqa suburb, amid aerial bombardment by the Syrian air force.

The air strikes were aimed to hit headquarters of the Islamic State (IS) in Raqqa province. However, none of the IS militants were killed during the attacks, the sole casualties being the six children.

“Four children out of six were from one family,” said Abdurrahman Ali, a resident of Raqqa. “One missile hit the house of al-Hamoud family in Sabahiya, leading to the death of the four children.”

The city’s Major Stadium, the National Hospital of Raqqa, and the towns of Akeshi and Sabkha in the eastern countryside of Raqqa were exposed to similar air strikes by the pro-Assad forces on Sunday, the same source reported.

Speaking to ARA News in Raqqa, media activist Dima al-Mohammed said that the raids did not directly target IS headquarters.

“Only residential buildings were bombed, causing casualties among civilians,” al-Mohammed said. “IS extremists can now claim that they are in Raqqa to protect civilians, which is not true, as the group itself suppresses and prosecutes the peaceful residents.”

Noteworthy, the pro-regime air force has intensified its raids against the province of Raqqa after the fall of the military airport of Tabqa at the hands of the IS group last week, which was the regime’s last military stronghold in the province.


Reporting by: Ahmed Resul

Source: ARA News

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