Piles of rubble which once were houses, never-ending shelling and civilians who have nowhere to go – RT’s Lizzie Phelan visited the Kurdish-populated Aleppo district of Sheikh-Maqsood, which has been caught in the crossfire of terrorist artillery.
Having spent just two hours in Sheikh-Maqsood, Phelan said she rarely had a moment when she did not hear shelling. She passed by the ruins of a building which was leveled the day before. A whole family died there – four women and three children.
“We saw something flying towards the house and then there was an explosion. The building collapsed in just a few seconds,” their neighbor told the RT crew.
Phelan counted nine destroyed buildings in the neighborhood close to two front lines.
“It was definitely Al-Nusra,” a local girl told RT, referring to one of the recent attacks on the district. “They must have been targeting civilians because there are no fighters here. The only reason all these people were killed is because they lived in a district of strategic importance.”
The US-Russian agreement on a “cessation of hostilities” in Syria came into effect in late February. A total of 97 armed groups operating in Syria have agreed to the ceasefire. However, it does not not apply to Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), Al-Nusra Front, or “other terrorist organizations” designated by the UN.
“For us the truce hasn’t changed anything. In fact, it’s even worse than before. Terrorists have intensified their attacks,” another resident said.
The Syrian Army insists that Al-Nusra Front, which is Al-Qaeda’s branch in Syria, and Islamic State maintain a strong presence everywhere in parts of the city held by the opposition.