Scores killed in Syrian government airstrikes on Idlib

The intense raids levelled several of Idlib’s multi-storey buildings [Ammar Abdullah/Reuters]
Al-Jazeera – Dozens of people, including civilians, have been killed in air strikes on the rebel-held Syrian city of Idlib, according to several sources, in some of the most ferocious raids there in months.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Tuesday that at least 26 people were killed and casualties were expected to rise as rescue workers searched for bodies under the rubble.

“Ten civilians, mostly women, are among the dead,” Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the UK-based monitoring group tracking development’s in Syria’s conflict, told AFP news agency.

Abdel Rahman said the raids were probably carried out by Russian fighter jets – allied with Syria’s government – or by a US-backed air coalition.

The strikes also wounded scores of people and levelled several multi-storey buildings in residential areas of the northwestern city, according to witnesses, who told Reuters news agency that the extent of the damage and the debris bore the hallmarks of a Russian attack.

But Russia’s defence ministry said later on Tuesday media reports that its planes had bombed Idlib were not true, Interfax news agency reported.

The Civil Defence, a volunteer rescue group operating in rebel-held areas, gave a different death toll, saying 15 bodies were pulled from the rubble and that 30 wounded people were taken for treatment.

Video footage by activists on social media showed civilians, including young children, being treated in a main city hospital where the injured had been taken for treatment.

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