(JNS.org) A suspected gas attack, carried out by either Syria’s government or Russian jets, killed at least 68 people—including 11 children—in the Syrian province of Idlib Tuesday.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that the gas attack caused dozens of people to choke and collapse, while others had foam coming out of their mouths and pinpoint pupils—all symptoms of exposure to poisonous gas.
Syrian activists released images showing victims foaming at the mouth and almost-naked children writhing on the ground as rescue workers hosed them down. Footage released following the attack also showed the lifeless bodies of nearly a dozen children piled onto a wooden cart.
“When I saw pictures of babies suffocating from a chemical attack in Syria, I was shocked and outraged,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement Tuesday. “There’s no, none, no excuse whatsoever for the deliberate attacks on civilians and on children, especially with cruel and outlawed chemical weapons. I call on the international community to fulfill its obligation from 2013 to fully and finally remove these horrible weapons from Syria.”
The death toll following the suspected gas attack is expected to rise as more victims arrive for treatment. Unverified reports from Syrian opposition sources reported that at least 100 people were killed and close to 400 were wounded.
According to AFP, a hospital treating victims in Idlib was bombed just a few hours after the purported chemical weapons assault.
The Syrian government has repeatedly denied using chemical weapons. The latest incident came after the Israeli Air Force reportedly became increasingly active within Syria throughout March.
“The world cannot be silent in the face of the horrific massacre in Syria and allow this devastation to repeat itself,” Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon said Tuesday. “The U.N. must act immediately to put an end to the use of any chemical weapons and ensure their removal from Syrian territory. This is the U.N.’s true purpose and it must fulfill this fundamental responsibility.”