Airstrikes in Ghouta

More than 500 civilians have been killed during a week of intense bombardment directed by the Syrian government and backed by Russia in a rebel enclave near Damascus in Eastern Ghouta. Of these victims, 121 are children. Russia has denied direct involvement while the Syrian government has denied targeting civilians, instead claiming that they are attempting to liberate the area from ‘terrorists’, a broad term which has previously been used to describe jihadist militants and rebel groups. The UN security council is struggling to reach a ceasefire solution, partly because Russia is stalling for time by delaying a vote.