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Monday 30.03.2020 | Name days: Nanija, Ilgmārs, Igmārs

Assad: Fate of the nation is at stake

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The conflict between rebels and government forces across Syria will decide the fate of the nation, President Bashar al-Assad has warned.

Mr Assad has not spoken in public for two weeks, but issued a statement to mark armed forces day praising soldiers for confronting «armed terrorist gangs», BBC reported.

«The fate of our people and our nation, past, present and future, depends on this battle,» the statement said.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International says in a report that government forces committed crimes against humanity this month in the second city, Aleppo.

Amnesty accuses security forces and pro-government militiamen, known as shabiha, of firing on peaceful protesters and bystanders, including children. It also says medical teams were targeted and those arrested were often tortured.

In the report, based on research carried out in May, the rights group appealed to the UN Security Council to refer Syria to the International Criminal Court and impose an arms embargo on the country.

Activists estimate some 20,000 people have died since March last year.

Activists have also told that a large military column is heading towards Aleppo to reinforce the army units engaging the rebels. However, this has not been confirmed by the government or independent sources.

BNN already reported that thousands of residents in Syria’s two largest cities have fled their neighborhoods since last week, to escape violence, as the military built up its presence around rebel strongholds in Aleppo and renewed attacks on parts of Damascus. Across the capital, extended families fleeing the Daraya, Qudsaya and the Yalda suburbs piled into public schools, vacant apartment blocks and cheap hotels. Volunteers are trying to help the people with food water and essential household objects.

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