At Least 19 Killed in Syrian Regime Shelling on Eastern Ghouta

Several people were killed in strikes against eastern Ghouta in Syria

At least 19 civilians were killed on Saturday in shelling by forces allied to the Syrian regime against the Damascus suburb of eastern Ghouta.

Units of the Syrian Arab Army responded to the attacks by striking the areas from where those shells were launched in the Eastern Ghouta, destroying a number of rocket launching pads and killing and injuring members of the armed groups.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and Syrian activist Mazen al-Shami said the fighting was concentrated inside a military installation near the suburb of Harasta, where a government force has been trapped for a day.

At least one civilian was killed and one more was injured after the militants shelled the suburbs of the Syrian capital, as well as a refugee camp, local media reported. The Red Cross and Red Crescent took three days to evacuate 29 patients from the besieged suburbs to receive urgent medical care at government hospitals in Damascus.

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More than 400 patients on a United Nations list waiting for evacuations were left behind however. The UN's children's agency said more than 100 children require evacuation. The region was once a hotbed of protest against President Bashar Assad's government.

Food stores and medical supplies have dried up under the blockade.

Last month, the United Nations called on world powers to help arrange the medical evacuation of 500 people, including 167 children, from eastern Ghouta, dubbing it a "humanitarian emergency".

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