Man in Idlib fearing chemical attack makes gas mask from party cups


Meanwhile, the Syrian government began a new round of artillery and rocket shelling in southern Idlib, and adjoining northern Hama Province, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group.

In another show of force, the Pentagon launched a surprise exercise in southern Syria on Friday after Russian Federation threatened military action in an area of Syria where us troops are located.

Turkey on Monday urged Syria and Russian Federation to halt all bombing on the Syrian province of Idlib, and called for a ceasefire in the region near its border.

Russian Federation and Iran backed a military offensive to reclaim the last major rebel-held area of Syria, while Turkey called for a ceasefire to prevent mass casualties among the province's estimated 3.5 million population.

Some three million people have sought refuge in the northwestern province of Idlib, many of them after being displaced from other parts of Syria in the civil war.

Last week, the United Nations warned an offensive on Idlib would likely lead to the "worst humanitarian catastrophe of the 21st century".

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"We've tried to convey the message in recent days that if there's a third use of chemical weapons, the response will be much stronger", Bolton said in a speech on Monday in Washington.

More than three million people have fled to Idlib and as many as 70,000 opposition fighters are dug in there.

Mark Lowcock, the UN's secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief, said that a major assault on opposition-held areas in northwest Syria could force 800,000 civilians to flee to the Turkish border and risked provoking the worst humanitarian catastrophe of the 21st century.

About half of those displaced so far have moved to camps, while others went to informal settlements, stayed with families or rented housing, OCHA spokesman David Swanson said on Monday.

"I also want to reiterate what I said last week to the Assad regime and anyone else contemplating the use of chemical weapons in Syria", Haley added.

Trump has already launched two retaliatory strikes against Syria since taking office in response to chemical attacks that killed civilians, the second of which was done in conjunction with British and French forces.

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"Getting smuggled across is nearly impossible, and there have been several cases of displaced people being shot dead while trying to enter Turkey illegally", Rifai said.

For Ankara, Idlib was meant to remain a de-escalation zone - agreed with its Astana partners Iran and Russian Federation almost one year ago and guaranteed by 12 Turkish military observation points.

"We had come (to Idlib) without anything", he said. "The consequences of inaction are immense" Erdogan said.

The local council of Morek, a town that serves as a crossing between Hama and Idlib, sent an urgent appeal, asking Turkey for a quick solution.

Idlib is mostly controlled by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) - an alliance spearheaded by powerful jihadists once linked to Al-Qaeda.

Turkey, which has recently sent reinforcements to its borders to prevent the influx of more refugees, now hosts more than three million Syrians.

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