While they haven’t gotten nearly the coverage as the Syrian military’s “barrel bombs,” makeshift explosives-filled oil barrels rolled out of helicopters, Syrian rebel factions have turned to their own improvised weapons in the ongoing civil war.
Dubbing them “hell cannons,” the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights detailed the problem of rebels making improvised mortars out of old cooking gas containers filled with fertilizer and fired, by cannon, into government-held areas.
The problem is the same as that of the barrel bombs, they’re wildly inaccurate and tend to veer off-course, killing large numbers of civilian bystanders. The observatory confirmed over 300 civilians have been killed with the weapons since July, overwhelmingly in Aleppo.
Reports of hell cannon usage in Syria have been around for years, but this is the first report detailing the civilian consequences of such weaponry, something which has long been ignored.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- US-Led Airstrikes Killed 472 Civilians in Syria in the Past Month - June 23rd, 2017
- US Narrows Counter-Extremism Program to Focus on Islamists - June 23rd, 2017
- Senator: US Strikes on Syrian Forces 'Unlawful' - June 23rd, 2017
- Kurds Warn Turkey's Buildup in North Syria Threatens Raqqa Invasion - June 23rd, 2017
- Senators Seek Clarification on US Role in Yemen Torture - June 23rd, 2017