The war in Syria has cost 11,215 lives in the past twelve months. 3473 dead were civilians, around a thousand of them children, the opposition-oriented Syrian Human Rights Observatory, based in Great Britain, said yesterday. The year 2019 is the year with the lowest number of victims since the beginning of the civil war in 2011. Information from the observatory, which relies on a network of informants in Syria, is difficult to verify independently.
In total, more than 370,000 people have died in the past almost nine years. Millions of Syrians were forced to flee. The year with the most fatalities was 2014, when more than 76,000 people died.
Fight on three fronts
The fighting in Syria was concentrated on three fronts in the past year. In March, Kurdish and Arab fighters expelled from the United States supported the Islamic State (IS) jihadist militia from their last retreat in the east of the country.
In the last rebel bastion Idlib in the northwest, the government intensified its airstrikes in the summer with the support of its Russian ally. Recently there were violent battles again.
There was fierce fighting in the Kurdish areas in the northeast in October when the Turkish army launched a new offensive against the Kurdish People’s Defense Units (YPG). Turkey has agreed a ceasefire and withdrawal of the YPG from the border area with Russia, but skirmishes still exist. In addition, car bombings occur repeatedly in the Turkish-controlled zone.