26 Civilians Killed as Syrian Airstrikes Hit Deir Ezzor Market

Fighting Reported Near Deir Ezzor Airport

The eastern Syrian city of Deir Ezzor, contested between government and ISIS forces, is once again the site of fighting, with reports of troops and ISIS forces clashing around the area of the city’s airport, a site that has repeatedly been fought over in recent years.

The big death toll, as with most of the fighting around Syria, was a civilian one, with reports from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights that airstrikes hit the crowded marketplace in the Shaara neighborhood, killing at least 26 people.

It is unclear why the market was struck, as no ISIS forces were said to be in the area. Russia was quick to deny involvement in the attack, which also wounded a large number of people, leaving many expecting the toll to rise further.

This is the latest in a number of incidents in which airstrikes ended up hitting marketplaces and killing civilian bystanders, a particularly ill-timed flurry of such incidents coming during the start of Ramadan, which will only add to the resentment among civilians trapped in the middle of the war.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.