Syria: At least 224 killed in first week of Ramadan

    Syria: At least 224 killed in first week of Ramadan

    June 14, Damascus: At least 224 people have been killed in the first week of Ramadan in Syria. The majority of the deaths were resulting from bombings by Syrian and Russian warplanes.

    According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitor, between 6 and 12 June - the first week of the Islamic holy month of fasting - at least 148 civilians, including 50 children and 15 women, were killed as helicopters dropped "explosive barrel" bombs.

    The group added that at least 12 people were killed in shelling by rebels and fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). At least one man was executed by ISIL in the same period.

    "We ... renew our condemnation of the international community for its continued terrifying silence about the crimes committed against the Syrian people," the monitor said.

    The death toll includes casualties from air strikes on a market in Idlib city, in which at least 40 civilians died on Sunday. Activists say most of those victims were women and children.

    Several monitoring groups, as well as Turkish authorities, accused Russia of conducting the air strikes in Idlib, but Russian authorities denied any involvement, reports said.

    The Observatory report comes as hundreds of civilians are fleeing the ISIL stronghold of Manbij in northern Syria and as fears grow for the thousands who remain trapped in the city, which is besieged by US-backed Kurdish and Arab forces.

    The Syrian conflict, which began with peaceful protests in March 2011, has escalated into a multi-sided civil war.

    According to United Nations estimation, the death toll has risen to more than 280,000 people, while half the country's population have been forced from their homes.

    The Oslo Times International News Network


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