Eighty-one people were killed Wednesday when Russian warplanes struck rebel-held parts of Syria’s northwestern city of Aleppo, according to a local civil defense official.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Beibars Meshaal, a pro-opposition civil defense official based in the city, said Russian jets targeted Aleppo’s opposition-held al-Fardos and al-Maadi neighborhoods.
“For the last two days, Russian warplanes have been striking opposition-held parts of eastern Aleppo,” Meshaal said.
“Yesterday, they dropped more than 30 deep-penetration bombs on the city,” he added.
According to local civil defense sources who spoke on condition of anonymity, five people in northwestern Idlib, and eight in the eastern Ghouta region of Damascus were killed in the air strike conducted by Russian jets and the regime forces.
On Tuesday, at least 43 civilians were killed — and dozens more injured — by Russian airstrikes on rebel-held parts of the city.
In late September, Russia began using deep-penetration munitions (“bunker-busters”) in opposition-held parts of Syria.
Such bombs are generally used to destroy heavily fortified underground rebel shelters and tunnels.
Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests — which erupted as part of the “Arab Spring” uprisings.
Since then, more than a quarter of a million people have been killed and more than 10 million displaced across the war-torn country, according to UN figures.
One year ago, the Russian military began extensive air operations in Syria with the stated aim of fighting terrorist groups based in the country and supporting the embattled Assad regime.
The ceasefire regime in Syria was violated 47 times by illegal armed groups over the last 24 hours, the Russian Center for reconciliation of warring parties in Syria said in its informational bulletin published on the Russian Defense Ministry’s official website on Tuesday.
The armed groups that declared cessation of hostilities used self-made multiple rocket launcher systems, mortars and small arms to shell the settlement of Azizi, Al-Marshaqa quarters in the city of Aleppo, and positions of government forces near the Zahr al-Nayrab mountain in the province of Aleppo; the settlement of Jaubar and positions of government forces near the Quseir farm in the province of Damascus; the settlements of Rasha and Nahshebba, and positions of government forces near the Al-Kala mountain in the province of Latakia.
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