A two-year-old boy, identified as Zidan Mohammad from Deir Ez-Zour city who was living with his family in Hasaka city, was killed on September 21, 2023, in bombardment by Syrian regime forces who fired multiple shells at al-Nasra neighborhood in the center of Hasaka city. One of the shells hit Zidan’s family’s house, killing him.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) notes that the bombardment took place in tandem with infighting between groups affiliated with Syrian regime army forces and the Syrian regime’s National Defense militia in the security compound in Hasaka city. These clashes caused a large displacement wave in that area, as civilians are fleeing to the areas under the control of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in the city.
The area where the killing took place is under the control of the SDF. Through these attacks, Syrian regime forces have again unequivocally violated Security Council resolutions 2139 & 2254, both of which categorically prohibit indiscriminate attacks, as well as violating the rules of international humanitarian law on distinguishing between civilians and fighters. Such attacks aim solely to spread fear and panic among civilians, to drive them from their lands and homes, and to forcibly displace them. It is estimated that 6.5 million people are currently internally displaced in Syria.
The international community must put pressure on the Syrian regime and its allies to support a process of political transition. Pressure should be applied on all parties to compel them to launch such a transition within a period of no more than six months, so that millions of displaced people can safely and stably return to their homes.