Syrian regime forces used a missile launcher to shell al Hal Market in Ariha city center in the northern suburbs of Idlib governorate on January 14, 2021, severely damaging several shops and the market’s facilities. SNHR can confirm that the market is located within a residential area and is free of any military presence or equipment.
Through this action, the Syrian forces have, without doubt, committed another violation of Security Council resolutions 2139 and 2254 which prohibited any further indiscriminate attacks, as well as violating the rules of international humanitarian law which stress the distinction between civilians and combatants. Attacks of this nature spread terror and panic among civilians, leading them to flee their lands and homes in an attempt to reach safety, and forcibly displacing them, with the number of internally displaced persons within Syria now reaching approximately 6.5 million Syrian citizens in total. The international community should put pressure on the Syrian regime and its allies to compensate the displaced victims, rehabilitate homes and vital centers, support the process of political transition and press all parties to pursue implementation of political transition according to a strict timetable which must not exceed six months, thus enabling millions of IDPs to return homes.