Defeat in eastern Ghouta would deal the rebels their biggest blow since the fall of Aleppo - Syria's second city - in December 2016 by forcing them from their only significant stronghold left near Syria's capital.
Fresh shelling of Eastern Ghouta endangered a vital aid delivery on Friday, almost three weeks into a blistering Syrian regime offensive that has seized more than half of the rebel enclave.
An aid convoy was scheduled to reach the besieged area on Thursday, and aimed to deliver much needed medical supplies that were prevented from being delivered earlier this week.
The attack started as the convoy approached Douma to deliver aid that could not be offloaded Monday because of deteriorating security. An additional aid convoy was supposed to enter the area again Thursday but held back because of reports of chemical attacks and heavy shelling.
Tens of thousands of people have fled further into the enclave in the face of the warfare, a United Nations official said on Thursday, and residents of Douma said shelters are crowded with the new arrivals.
"In this context, France once again denounces these violations of global humanitarian law and reiterates its request to Russian Federation, which approved Security Council Resolution 2401, to do everything in its power to ensure that the violence ceases as soon as possible", the ministry said.
Doctors at one facility treated at least 29 patients with signs of exposure to chlorine, according to the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), which supports hospitals in Eastern Ghouta.
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The Britain-based Observatory, which monitors the Syria war through a network of activists on the ground, also reported that dozens of people from the town of Hammouriyeh in eastern Ghouta staged a demonstration holding Syrian flags and calling for the end to the fighting in the area.
Zeid Raad al-Hussein, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, has called for perpetrators of crimes in eastern Ghouta to be held accountable and for an independent investigation into recent events.
By 2013, Eastern Ghouta is under a strangulating regime siege, slashing access to food, medicine, and other goods.
Russian Federation insists that using violence against civilians, preventing them from leaving the region and using them as a human shield is inadmissible, Yevtushenko went on.
For the first few days, the humanitarian pauses were disrupted by terrorists, who shelled the humanitarian corridor, through which civilians were supposed to leave the area.
"Assad's forces advanced near the town of Beit Siwa, while rebels have taken new positions in Al Muhammadiyah", he said.