Man in Idlib fearing chemical attack makes gas mask from party cups

Erdoğan says Idlib assault would be ‘a grave massacre

Erdoğan says Idlib assault would be ‘a grave massacre

Turkey's president has warned of a humanitarian disaster if a Syrian government offensive on the rebel enclave of Idlib goes forward.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has urged the global community to prevent a Syrian government offensive in Syria's Idlib, as the United Nations says it fears the century's "worst humanitarian catastrophe" there.

The chemical weapons attack, attributed to the Syrian regime, reportedly killed more than 70 people and injured over 550 more, at the time making it the deadliest such attack of the Syrian civil war since the chemical weapons attack in Ghouta four years prior.

Trump has twice ordered US -led strikes against targets in Syria in response to what Washington called the Assad government's use of chemical weapons against civilians.

De Mistura will meet on Monday and Tuesday with the guarantor countries of Astana process - Turkey, Russia, and Iran. "It was noted that the situation there is really hard and every effort is needed to spare civilians from suffering", he stressed. "Conventional weapons are responsible for far more deaths", he said.

More than 3 million people live in the rebel-held territory, almost half of them already displaced from fighting elsewhere in Syria.

Turkey is appealing for a ceasefire to allow for negotiations on the fate of armed groups in Idlib, but Russian Federation and Iran have rejected that call.

Turkey has continued to provide humanitarian relief to opposition areas in Idlib and Latakia - situated in Syria's north - and operates a number of military observation posts in the province.

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Russia, Iran and Turkey held a summit in Tehran last week to discuss the Assad regime's reported plan to use military force to restore Damascus' control over Idlib, where three million people live.

Analysts said Erdogan failed at the summit to achieve his aim, and his comments appear to indicate growing frustration in Turkey that Iran and Russian Federation are not reining in Assad.

But he stressed that "there are 100 civilians, majority women and children, for every fighter in Idlib".

The U.S., Britain and France have pledged to respond to any use of chemical weapons in Idlib.

"It is a very major preoccupation for us", he said.

Turkey, which now hosts some 3.5 million refugees, has also said that it could not accommodate any more migrants if an attack on Idlib caused a new surge of refugees towards its border.

Idlib is home to around 3 million people, around half refugees who fled other parts of Syria following previous regime assaults. They are believed to be holding them in the Safaa area. Let us make no mistake: "such an operation would not achieve the stated goal", he told the Security Council.

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