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NOW

ISIS strikes rebel-held Syria
town with toxic gas: activists

At least eight people were injured in Aleppo's Marea, according to the Syrian Network for Human Rights.

Marea strike. (Facebook/abdalrhman.alsoud)

BEIRUT – ISIS has reportedly fired rockets containing toxic gas into Marea, the latest rudimentary chemical attack by the extremist group against the rebel-held town outside Aleppo.

 

Local activist outlets, including the Marea Media Center, said Tuesday evening that there were several cases of suffocation in the beleaguered town after the ISIS strike, however there were no reports of any deaths.

 

“We have received several injured people suffering from suffocation, redness in the eyes and difficulty breathing,” a doctor in Marea’s Freedom Field Hospital told the pro-opposition Souriat News.

 

Treatment 1

An image circulating social media purports to show a man receiving treatment following Tuesday's purported strike. 

 

The unnamed medical practitioner added that the injured were “injected with cortisone shots, while the affected areas of their body were washed down with cold water.”

 

Treatment 2

Another image shows a man being washed following the alleged chemical strike. 

 

Shortly after the attack, images circulated social media showing the shells fired into Marea as well first responders with gas masks rushing to the scene of the strike.

 

Chemical

A picture purports to show first responders handling a chemical-laden mortar rounds fired into Marea. (Facebook/abdalrhman.alsoud)

 

The Syrian Network for Human Rights documenting violations in the war-torn country said that at least 8 people were injured in the toxic gas attack, including a woman and a young girl.

 

Girl

A young girl wearing a gas mask. (Image via Syrian Network for Human Rights)

 

The exact substance packed into the projectiles fired into Marea remains in question, with ARA news reporting it was chlorine—which has been used repeatedly as a weapon in Syria—while other outlets and activists said only that it was a “toxic substance.”

 

Marea, which lies in a strip of opposition-held north of Aleppo hemmed in by Kurdish and ISIS front-lines, has been stricken by a number of chemical attacks launched by the transnational jihadist group.

 

The UN’s Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapon revealed in report that its findings indicated a “non-state actor” hit the north Aleppo town with mustard gas on August 21, 2015, killing a young child.

 

Sources in the watchdog told AFP that it was the first confirmed use of the internationally proscribed weapon since the start of the Syrian war in 2011.

 

NOW's English news desk editor Albin Szakola (@AlbinSzakola) wrote this report. Amin Nasr translated Arabic-language material. 

White Helmet first responders at the site of Tuesday's rocket strike on Marea. (Facebook/abdalrhman.alsoud)

We have received several injured people suffering from suffocation, redness in the eyes and difficulty breathing.