Syrian regime warplanes knocked the Civil Defence’s Center 114 in the East Ghouta suburbs out of commision on Sunday.
“The bombing damaged ambulances and firetrucks, and inflicted moderate injuries on a number of first responders,” Madhmoud Adam, spokesman for the Civil Defence in East Gouta, told the Syrian Voice.
“The targeting of Civil Defense bases, and resulting damage to our equipment, especially heavy equipment, has been a big challenge before the Civil Defence in East Ghouta. The siege imposed on the suburbs makes it difficult to replace damaged cars and equipment, and import machines that are meant to deal with this type of destruction,” said Adam.
Since its founding in 2013, 128 members of the Civil Defense have been killed, including 33 in the Damascus countryside, some of whom were targeted directly, said Adam.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights has documented “the arrest of 16 Civil Defense members, including 6 by hardline Islamist groups, 5 by opposition brigades, and 5 by unknown parties,” according to a report.
According to the same report, Civil Defense centers were attacked 66 times, 62 by government forces, 3 by Russian warplanes, and one by a party the Network could not conclusively identify.
“We have an alternative system in place for the Civil Defense in the Marj region of East Ghouta, until Center 114 is restored with its equipment,” Qasem al-Masarwa, head of the Civil Defense in Rif Dimashq, told the Syrian Voice.
“But in general, the targeting of these centers has a hugely negative impact on our teams and their ability to provide services to civilians,” he said.
“The Civil Defense provides civilians with first response and evacuation services. It puts out fires, saves people’s lives and conducts other types of humanitarian work,” said al-Masarwa.
“The Syrian regime systematically targets Civil Defense centers in Syria, despite the lack of any justification, considering these centers provide services to all civilians. Center 114 is not the first to be targeted by the regime,” he added.
The Civil Defence paid its respects Wednesday to a first responder killed in the West Ghouta town of Darayya, where barrel bombs fall daily. East Ghouta also paid its respects to Abu Qais, a famous media activist, after he was wounded in an airstrike on July 14, according to the Civil Defence’s media office.
Warplanes targeted another Civil Defence center at the beginning of July in Harietein in the northern Aleppo countryside, knocking it out of service. Warplanes killed four Civil Defence members by striking their car on June 28, as they were rushing to provide first aid to residents of Yaqed al-Adas village in the northern Aleppo countryside.