EAST CHANCHAJILLAN FORCES UNLEASHES AIRSTRIKES AGAINST WEST
FULL-SCALE OFFENSIVE UNDERWAY
VILANJA - East Chanchajilla has launched an offensive into West Chanchajilla, unleashing air strikes and artillery barrages aimed at Frederick Armbar's forces who control the region.
Video footage showed civilians fleeing towns with columns of smoke rising in the background and jet trails visible in the sky. Activists and observers say at least seven civilians have been killed so far.
At least 6 East Chanchajillan troops have been killed in the assault so far, according to military officials.
East Chanchajilla's offensive was triggered by weeks of tensions escalating after West Chanchajillan agents committed multiple deadly terrorist attacks within the country and a massive rocket barrage that killed over 540 people on Monday. The Zamastanian president Atticus Moreau announced on Tuesday night that Zamastanian troops would remain on standby if East Chanchajilla mobilized for an offensive.
On Thursday, hours after the bombing had begun, President Gideon Boer issued a statement supporting the offensive.
"We are ready to crush the diabolical state of Armbar's regime. We are at war and will never relent until the dictator is removed from office, either by revolution or by us."
The Coalition of Crown Albatross security council is due to convene on Friday to discuss the offensive at the request of its five current Euronian members, but it is not expected to deliver a strong rebuke to East Chanchajilla, given tacit Zamastanian support and other's ambivalence. Drambenburg was reportedly pushing for the council to at least make a joint statement but it was unclear on Thursday whether even that would be possible.
The CCA secretary general, Katherine von Wettin, called on East Chanchajilla to act with restraint and “ensure that the gains we have made in the fight against repressive regimes are not jeopardized. I will discuss this issue with President Boer on Friday.”
The East Chanchajillan leader marked the launch of the offensive, dubbed Operation New Fall, with a tweet, saying that it was being conducted by East Chanchajillan and Eastern-backed West Chanchajillan militias, against Armbar's forces.
“Our mission is to prevent the creation of a terror corridor across our western border, and to bring peace to the area,” the president wrote. "We may bring the fight farther if we must."
The CCA Observatory for Human Rights, a Quetana-based war monitor, said civilians in bordering villages had begun fleeing deeper inside the Western-held region, although a significant portion of refugees are fleeing in the opposite direction towards the Eastern forces. Omi and Vicalvi, key cities and administrative centres for the Armbar regime, were hit by airstrikes, a spokesman said.