Al Houleh, located in Homs’s suburbs, has witnessed dreadful massacres committed by pro-regime Shabiha (thugs) and Alawites from nearby villages, such as Falleh, Al Shnayyeh, Ooj, Kurmus,and Fahel. The massacre is similar to that of Karm Al Zytoun and Karm Al Loz districts, which lie near Alawite districts too. To make this clearer, here is how the districts in Homs are arranged. Locate Karm Al Zytoun and Karm Al Loz and look at the surrounding districts; all what you will find are pro-regime districts, such as Akrameh Al Jadeed and Al Nuzhah, dominated by the Alawites. Do note that this is not a fully detailed map. Some districts are not present in it.
Primarily, Al Houleh was bombarded for about 12 consecutive hours. Regime’s militias used mortar bombs and rockets to directly target the houses of innocent, unarmed civilians. Activist Hadi Al Abdullah reported yesterday in a call for Al Jazeera Arabic.
“Relentless shelling has continued to target al-Houla for more than 12 hours so far. Hundreds of rockets have hit civilian houses and many houses have been burned down.”
Note that the medical conditions in Al Houleh are extremely terrible as there is only one makeshift hospital in the city. Doctors yesterday reported that they urgently needed anesthetic sprays and gauze. Up to 300 civilians were injured, many of them children; since the most basic medical needs are very scarce, the treatment and well-being of +300 injured civilians (many severely) is seemingly impossible. Some videos of wounded civilians:
Here are videos of 2 of the martyrs killed by the bombardment yesterday, 25/4/2012. The first video if of martyr Talal Bakkour, and the second is of martyr Osama Al Fares:
How can we report a massacre without mocking the UN observers who are of no use at all. Yesterday, Ban Ki Moon cited that when the UN observers are present in an area, the pace of killing alleviates; but the reality on ground is a total antipode. Every time the UN observers visit an area then leave it, regime’s militias begin to hysterically target civilians by gunfire, tanks, and mortars. Tens of casualties fall and the cycle repeats in several areas around Syria. Whether it is deliberate or not, the UN observers have become a token in the regime’s hands. Assads are using Annan’s plan in Syria to kill more civilians by more savagery and brutality. Considering the fact that the slaughter massacre has not been addressed yet ,which we shall assume that it is not part of the monitors’ duty, the use of heavy military equipment to target a populace surely is. Hadi Al Abdullah also said in his call to Al Jazeera, which was about 00:00 a.m. Syria time:
“I have called the international observers, crying and pleading them to come to al-Houla. They told me they can only do so tomorrow morning. I begged them to come so the shelling stops for a mere half an hour, but they said:”the regime does not allow us to tour at night.” I swear to God, most of the observers I called were asleep and I woke them up by my calls. Did they come to Syria to sleep?!”
As the shelling continued till nighttime, civilians uncovered the slaughter massacre as the shells were hammering them. Regime’s Shabiha (thugs) and loyalists from nearby pro-regime Alawite-dominated villages invaded the outskirts of Al Houleh, stormed the houses of civilians (some houses also held refugees from the city of Homs), and slaughtered them using knives and “white weapons”. Many of the corpses bore signs of torture too. Most of the martyrs were children, aged from 2 up to 12 and 13. The final death toll in Homs alone yesterday was 106, amongst them around 88 in Al Houleh, 50 of which were slaughtered children. Note that up till this moment, there still are many corpses stuck under the rubble of bombarded houses and in occupied areas in Al Houleh. Civilians and activists are unable to know the conditions of several families there or to know the exact number of casualties.
Pro-Assad loyalists and thugs who invaded Al Houleh and committed this massacre are similar to those who committed that of Karm Al Zytoun and Karm Al Loz in the city of Homs about 2 months ago, except that up till now, no reports that any of the women/girls were raped in yesterday’s massacre. Several villages in Homs, Hama, and Sahl Al Ghab have been completely emptied from their residents. Here is Wissam Tarrif (Avaaz’s Arab World campaigner currently based in Lebanon) tweet yesterday, reporting about how civilians began to flee the villages of Sahl Al Ghab after regime’s Shabiha (thugs) and loyalists committed a similar slaughter massacre in Sheezar area, killing a father and his 3 children:
Yesterday and because of the massacres uncovered and the continuous random bombardment, mass exodus of civilians, specially children and women, was reported in Al Houleh. Families attempted to find a safer place to stay in as the indiscriminate shelling targeted every single spot in Al Houleh. They fled also because of the slaughter the regime’s thugs carried out; they surely fear being victimized and murdered in such an appalling way. The regime defied every factor of Annan’s plan and probably every International law related to war crimes, including collective punishments, forcible displacements, the use of excessive force against an unarmed populace, and the use of internationally prohibited weapons, like nail bombs. Here are some videos and photos of the massacre yesterday. The videos are graphic; viewer discretion is advised.
LCC reported the following: statistics of the violations and martyrs in Syria since the beginning of the implementation of Annan’s plan up till 25th of May,
The number of martyrs in Syria, since the beginning of Mr. Annan initiative until the moment of writing this report, has reached 1635 martyrs. The Local Coordination Committees documented their names, among them 90 women and 123 children (95 males and 28 females). In addition, 48 martyrs died under torture, and 138 martyrs were executed in the field, among them 10 children.
The Local Coordination Committees was able to document the names of 1486 detainees only due to the interruption of communication in some areas, and difficulties in documenting the events there.
Syria has witnessed around 10,500 points of penetration by the regime’s army and its security forces against civilians in all Syrian provinces. Raiding, shelling and launching gunfire were reported on a daily basis, in addition to committing massacres to civilians. Houla massacre was the most recent one, where victims were mostly children and women.
Rest in peace my dear children. You all are my brothers and sisters. I still cannot overcome the photos Karm Al Zytoun and Karm Al Loz’s massacres committed by regime’s forces and thugs in Homs city about 2 months ago.
On the 24th of May, 2012, also 4 of Syria’s beautiful children and their mother were butchered by regime’s Shabiha (thugs) in Hama’s suburbs. ( more photos could be found here ):