30 killed in Syr­ian strikes

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

AMMAN—In­ten­sive Syr­ian air strikes on Satur­day killed at least 30 civil­ians in a Da­m­as­can sub­urb town north­east of the city a day after the re­ported ex­e­cu­tion of a Syr­ian air force pi­lot, a mon­i­tor and rebels said.

They said the raids tar­geted a med­i­cal cen­ter, a school and a res­i­den­tial area in Jayrud town, a heav­ily pop­u­lated area that struck a lo­cal truce with the army that had spared it the heavy bomb­ing on other rebel held ar­eas. It had made it a sanc­tu­ary for thou­sands of civil­ians flee­ing heavy bat­tles nearby. The UK-based Syr­ian Ob­ser­va­tory for Hu­man Rights said scores were also in­jured in the ae­rial strikes as well as shelling from army posts in the area.

A rebel spokesman said the strikes seemed to be in re­venge for the killing of a Syr­ian air force pi­lot who parachuted down near the town after his plane crashed on Fri­day.

“The strikes against civil­ians are in re­tal­i­a­tion against the ex­e­cu­tion of the pi­lot by Nusra Front,” said Said Seif al Qala­m­oni from the Free Syr­ian Army’s (FSA) Shahid Ah­mad Abdo brigade that op­er­ates in Jayrud along­side the al Qaeda’s Nusra Front and other groups.

Rebels in a joint op­er­a­tions room tar­geted a main army base in the re­gion with Rus­sian-made sur­face to sur­face mis­siles after the ae­rial strikes, al Qala­m­oni said.— Reuters

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