The Syrian regime has stepped up its assault on opposition groups in the northern Homs province after negotiations failed on Saturday.
A barrage of missiles are reported to have fallen on the numerous towns and villages across the countryside over the weekend, including Al-Zafaraneh, Talbissah and Al-Adawiyya, leaving at least two people dead, including one child, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
The White Helmets civil rescue unit also reported that more than 200 rockets fell on the town of Rastan in less than one hour, killing a woman and her child as well as injuring some 25 others.
Videos from the ground show multiple airstrikes on a village on the outskirts of Talbissah with smoke issuing from the ruins of the destroyed buildings.
— Qalaat Al Mudiq (@QalaatAlMudiq) April 29, 2018
The only functioning hospital in the province in the town of Al-Zafraneh has also been put out of service due to a missile attack; one of the hospital’s employees is also believed to have died according to activists on the ground.
Whilst opposition forces have resisted much of the ground attack, killing or wounding some 150 government troops since the offensive began two weeks ago, heavy bombardment has continued to take place today.
Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad has launched a renewed assault on opposition groups in the northern provinces, killing at least three civilians with strikes on the north of Homs and the south of Hama earlier this month.
Airstrikes have also continued in Idlib; earlier this month a suspected Russian air strike close to a market square left 27 people dead and over 150 injured. Last month, a Russian air strike on a school in the village of Kafr Batikh killed 20 people, 16 of whom were children. The incident marked the second massacre that week after 22 people were killed at a camp for internally displaced people in Hass.
The regime has also launched an attack on the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk in the south of the country. Some 20 people were killed in a seven-day series of airstrikes last week, warranting the UN to condemn the military offensive, calling for displaced Palestinians to be protected.
Earlier this month, the presidents of Russia, Iran and Turkey met in Ankara to discuss how to effectively de-escalate the conflict. Despite releasing a statement after the meeting expressing their commitment to “speed up their efforts to ensure calm on the ground” in Syria, rifts prevented the three states from agreeing on how to reduce violence, with the stated common ground limited to humanitarian endeavours.