Several fatal terrorist attacks at the beginning of this week have caused Russia’s Ministry of Defense to request a temporary truce in the Syrian towns near where the attacks occurred.
The bombings took place this past Monday, which ISIS took responsibility for, and over 150 people were killed. The attacks occurred in the northern Syrian cities of Tartus and Jableh. These unfortunate cities have been the victims of increasing ISIS activity during the past few months. The areas are being targeted specifically because they are strongholds for the Assad regime.
The Ministry of Defense is now calling for a truce because they claim that Syrian officials were not engaged in any military operations in nearby areas, yet ISIS still continued to advance and attack. The truce was to last for 72 hours, and to take place in Daraya and Eastern Ghouta.
In the meantime, the U.S. is still trying to convince Russia to help urge President Bashar al-Assad to stop the bombing of opposition forces in general, in order to cease the civil war in Syria.
Technically, Syria has been in a cease-fire since February, but this is constantly being broken by attacks, and the civil war persists. Possibly the most tragic aspect of this recent attack is that in Jableh, 43 people were killed due to the fact that a suicide bomber detonated inside of a hospital, killing mostly patients and the family members who were visiting them. The hospital was also so badly damaged in the attack that it is currently no longer operational.
Mark Toner, a state department representative in D.C., worries that everyone needs “to reconsider the fact that if this keeps up, we may be looking at a complete breakdown of the cessation,” and a further continuation of the civil war. As that is clearly what has already happened, one must take into consideration the origin of ISIS itself, and ask themselves who stands to benefit from the continuation of this conflict; who is pulling the strings?
While most hope for peace in Syria, it does not seem likely that this will be achieved while ISIS is making violent attacks on helpless civilians.