The Latest: Airstrike kills at least 20 in Syria

AP News
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Posted: Dec 04, 2016 11:33 AM
The Latest: Airstrike kills at least 20 in Syria

ALEPPO, Syria (AP) — The Latest on the conflict in Syria (all times local):

6:30 p.m.

Syrian first responders say at least 20 people have been killed in a presumed Russian or government airstrike on a rural market in the rebel-held Idlib province.

Ahmad al-Sheikho of the Syrian Civil Defense, volunteers who work in insurgent-held areas, says 37 others from the village of Maarat al-Nouman were taken to hospitals after Sunday's raid, some in grave condition.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 18 people were killed, including several children.

Russia's military announced last month it was resuming airstrikes on the northwestern Idlib province and central Homs province in support of the government.

An earlier airstrike on the nearby rebel-held village of Kafranbel killed at least 21 people.

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2:15 p.m.

Syrian activists say at least 3 children and 18 others have been killed in a series of air strikes on the opposition-controlled town of Kafranbel in northwestern Syria.

The activist-run Kafranbel Media Center published a list of 22 dead from the presumed Russian or Syrian government airstrikes.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group was able to confirm 21 dead, among them members of the local police force. It said the airstrikes hit the town's main marketplace.

Russia's military announced last month it was resuming its airstrikes on the northwestern Idlib province and central Homs province in support of the government's efforts to suppress a years-long uprising against its national authority. Kafranbel is not on any front lines of the raging war.

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12 p.m.

Syria's army says it is offering rebel fighters in besieged eastern Aleppo an opportunity to leave the city with their lives.

Army spokesman Brig. Gen. Samir Suleiman said those who choose to stay will face "inevitable death."

He spoke to The Associated Press in Aleppo, where government forces and allied militias are seeking to collapse an opposition pocket on the city's eastern side.

"We will continue fighting until we restore stability and security to all neighborhoods" of Aleppo, Suleiman said.

He said the Syrian army has retaken more than 50 percent of neighborhoods in eastern Aleppo.

He also said that efforts to retake Aleppo's historic quarters known as Old Aleppo will be the most difficult, adding that the army will use infantry and special forces.