On Saturday two F-15’s were seen bombing the town of Hajin with white phosphorous munitions
Hajin is in the Deir Ez-Zor province of Syria
The attack was reported by the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria
The use of white phosphorous in populated civilian areas is banned under the Geneva Condition
The Russian military has reported that two U.S. jets bombed the Syrian Deir Ez-Zor province with white phosphorus munitions on Saturday.
According to the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria, two F-15 jets bombed the town of Hajin with white phosphorous incendiary munitions which are banned under the Geneva Convention. Lieutenant-General Vladimir Savchenko claimed there were “large fires” in the area after the strike.
In 2009, the United States signed the 1980 Protocol III of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons which bans the use of white phosphorous in populated civilian areas. Use of white phosphorus devices is not forbidden as smoke screens or signals and acts as a loophole for America and other countries to continue to keep white phosphorous weapons.
In June of 2017, a U.S. led coalition used white phosphorous in residential areas of Raqqa, Syria. At that time, the official news agency for ISIS, Amaq News Agency, also claimed that the coalition used white phosphorus during attacks on ISIS’ Iraqi stronghold of Mosul.
Pictures and videos uploaded to social media claim the US-led coalition is using white phosphorous against civilians in residential areas of Raqqa, Syria. At least 48 civilians have been reported dead, but that number could continue to grow as the rubble clears.
Raqqa Is Burning
Refugee journalist Ali Borsan tweeted out a picture of the attack that read, “#Raqqa_is_burning#Raqqa_being_burnt#الرقة_تحترق#USA and #coalition are killing civilians with no reason i #Raqqah Killing for killing.”
Official news agency for ISIS, Amaq News Agency, also shared the images of the suspected white phosphorus attack, stating that “the infidels are exterminating the Muslims and jihadis in Mosul and Raqqa by white phosphorus.” Amaq also claimed that the coalition used white phosphorus during attacks on ISIS’ Iraqi stronghold of Mosul.
White phosphorus is made from a common allotrope used for making smoke, tracer, illumination, and incendiary munitions. When used as an incendiary weapon white phosphorus is pyrophoric (self-igniting), burns furiously, and is able to burn down to the bone if it comes into contact with a human being.
White phosphorus can be used as a smoke screen to cover movement on the ground, mask the origins of fire, or to signal to other troops. International law states that it cannot be used in residential areas due to the severe thermal and chemical burns it can cause when coming in contact with flesh.