Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Rage in Idlib after ‘White Helmets’ Slaughter | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Members of the Syrian civil defence volunteers, also known as the White Helmets, bury their fellow comrades during a funeral in Sarmin. / AFP

Ankara, Beirut- Rage prevailed in Idlib on Saturday after seven volunteers with the Syrian civil defense rescue service were killed in a shooting by unidentified attackers in rebel-held Idlib province on Saturday, while Turkey continued to adopt restrictions to control the border with Syria.

The attackers stole two vehicles and other equipment in the incident targeting a civil defense office in the town of Sarmin at dawn, Idlib.

Activists reported to Asharq Al-Awsat that a vehicle was later found burnt in the countryside of Idlib.

No party claimed responsibility for the operation but Abu Ali Abdulwahab from the Army of Islam said that ISIS and its allies are most probably behind this crime – in his statement to Asharq Al-Awsat, he noted that Sarmin was the capital of ISIS when the extremist group was present in Idlib.

The White Helmets organization published pictures of the bodies, covered with blood, as rage prevailed among people whom some were seen crying during the funeral.

The organization was nominated for the Noble Peace Prize in 2016 but didn’t win – it commenced operations in 2013 and the volunteers have been known since 2014 as the White Helmets for the sake of the helmets they put on their heads.

The organization stresses its neutrality and not supporting ay political or armed group — it receives funds from UK, Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Japan and the US.