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Hell on earth: The destruction of Eastern Ghouta Open in fullscreen

Hell on earth: The destruction of Eastern Ghouta

Date of publication: 28 February, 2018

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Special coverage: A selection of the latest news, analysis and exclusive feature pieces from one of the bloodiest episodes in Syria's seven-year war.
Syria's regime and Russia have unleashed daily airstrikes on the Eastern Ghouta region outside Damascus since February 18 in a bid to wipe out rebel groups from one of their last strongholds.

In the first ten days of the escalation in violence, more than 600 civilians, almost a quarter of them children, have been killed, making it one of the bloodiest episodes of the country's seven-year conflict.

Eastern Ghouta, the last rebel bastion near the capital, has been under a devastating regime siege since 2013, leading to chronic food and medicine shortages which have brought its 400,000 residents to the brink of starvation.

Despite UN calls for a ceasefire and a brief "humanitarian pause", the regime's deadly airstrikes have continued unabated.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has described life for civilians in Eastern Ghouta, bombed, starved and trapped, as "hell on earth".

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