|Frequent sight: Syrians line up to buy bread at an Aleppo bakery in August 2012 (Image Source: Youssef Boudlal/Reuters)|
"Every Syrian consumes on average half a kilo (a pound) of wheat a day" ["Syria grain trade, bread shortage risk signals alarm for Assad", Alarabiya.com, May 27, 2012]
indiscriminate attacks on or near bakeries in the past, especially in the northern city of Aleppo. In a three-week period in the summer, Human Rights Watch documented 10 separate bombings on bakeries in the city... [more]
residents had lined up for bread after the town received its first flour delivery in days [NYT]
dropped bombs and fired artillery at or near at least 10 bakeries in Aleppo province over the past three weeks, killing and maiming scores of civilians who were waiting for bread... One attack in the city of Aleppo on August 16, 2012, killed up to 60 people and wounded more than 70. Another attack in the city on August 21 killed at least 23 people and wounded 30.
government forces attacked the bakery when local residents were waiting in line. The ordnance, which included artillery shells, rockets, and bombs, hit very close to the lines, and pieces of shrapnel sprayed the people gathered, killing and seriously wounding scores of them... Witnesses to all of the bakery attacks told Human Rights Watch that the government gave no warnings. The 10 bakeries were in neighborhoods or towns where no fighting was taking place before or during the attack. In most cases, a few FSA fighters [the government's opponents] were at the bakeries to maintain order and assist with bread distribution, witnesses said, but they were usually not injured. [more]