Civilians killed in suspected Russian strikes on Syria

In this photo made from the footage taken from Russian Defense Ministry official web site on Friday, Oct. 16, 2015. (Reuters)

At least 18 civilians were killed and 40 wounded in "probably Russian" air strikes on a rebel-held town in northwestern Syria on Sunday, a monitoring group said.

The strikes hit the Idlib province town of Ariha, which is controlled by the Army of Conquest, a rebel alliance of mainly Islamist groups, including al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Several areas of the town were hit and rescue operations are under way with several critically wounded, the Britain-based group said.

The Army of Conquest alliance seized Ariha in May after heavy fighting with regime forces.

Russia launched a bombing campaign in Syria on September 30. It says it targets the ISIS group and other "terrorists", but critics accuse it of targeting moderate and Islamist rebel fighters more than ISIS.

Russian air strikes have previously hit several Army of Conquest positions in Idlib province.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:49 - GMT 06:49