Civilians Death Toll Continues To Rise In Syria

The further escalation of the conflict in Syria has seen another 14 civilians killed, and dozens more injured when an attack was launched against the Turkish-controlled town of al-Bab. This attack comes only a few days after an air attack was launched, and killed Syrian troops backed by the U.S., in Aleppo. These recent attacks have unfortunately seen the civilian death toll of the war continue to rise as civilians are continually put in situations whereby they are being targeted by the opposition, and either killed, wounded, or displaced as a consequence of the war. This latest round of attacks further emphasizes the need for continued and increased international cooperation in putting an end to the conflict.

To further illuminate the importance of peace in the area, the Syrian Civil Defence announced that among the 14 killed in the most recent attacks, five of them were children. This announcement should ring alarm bells to the greater international community to remind them that although fighting has decreased, there is still an ever-present threat of conflict whereby civilians, and even kids, are at the centre of the danger.

This most recent string of civilian casualties in Syria follows a pattern of civilian deaths that have occurred throughout the war. This war has been going on since 2011, and although violence has decreased in recent years, this area is still a potential hotbed for continued violence, war, and human rights abuses. Since the war began, there have been about 350,000 civilians killed, and around 500,000 total people killed. At the heart of the conflict has been the civilian death toll, and thus these staggering numbers should serve as a catalyst for meaningful peace talks, led by the international community. There have been attempts in the past by organizations like the UN or international coalitions to put an end to the war, but these efforts have come of little avail.

There had been some hope in the area that peace would be found after fighting had started to decrease over the past few years, however, incidents like this demonstrate the need for a swifter solution. Although fighting has started to slow, events like this demonstrate that war is always a possibility, and in cases of fighting, civilians are not safe from the fighting on either side. There should continue to be an increased international effort to encourage and create situations where both sides can peacefully talk to one another. More ceasefires should be encouraged to facilitate these peace talks, and to give the citizens a situation whereby they are not scared to leave their homes.

The international community is at the heart of the conflict because they have the power and tools to create peace talks between the two, and after 11 years of war, there should be certain strategies that the community can use to facilitate said talks. Without the likes of the UN and their assistance, the likelihood of this conflict coming to an end by itself is low as there has been little sign of a natural, peaceful conclusion of the conflict in its 11-year existence.

Peace talks must continue to be encouraged and facilitated by the international community to ensure that the citizens of Syria will soon have the ability to live without fear. It will not be easy, but reoccurring attacks that lead to civilian casualties show the importance of peace in the area. These most recent rocket attacks illustrate the ever-prominent dangers civilians of Syria are in, and if the state cannot or won’t do more to protect them, then there must be continued efforts by the greater community to help keep them safe. No person should have to fear for their life just because they live in a certain area or state, and the people of Syria have endured this reality long enough.