Suspected Russian airstrikes in rebel-held Syrian village kill, wound dozens

BEIRUT -- Airstrikes on a fuel market in a rebel-held village in northern Syria killed and wounded dozens on Tuesday and destroyed several tanker trucks, two Syrian opposition monitoring groups reported.

See Full Article

Opposition activists said warplanes also struck a popular market in the northern village of Maskaneh that is under the control of the Islamic State group, killing at least 12 people and wounding many others.

It was not immediately clear whose warplanes carried out the strikes, although the monitoring groups said the Russians targeted both markets.

The fuel market in the village of Maaret al-Naasan mostly sells diesel brought from areas under the control of the Islamic State group. The airstrikes on the market are likely part of a campaign to target the oil trade that is a major source of income for IS. The extremist group controls nearly half of Syria.

Russian warplanes as well as those of the U.S.-led coalition have destroyed hundreds of tanker trucks that are used to ferry oil from fields under the control of IS in eastern Syria to other parts of the country. The warplanes have also struck oil facilities in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour in recent weeks.

The Local Coordination Committees said Tuesday's airstrikes on Maaret al-Naasan were carried out by Russian warplanes and that they killed and wounded dozens of people.

Rami Abdurrahman, who heads the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said the airstrikes killed and wounded at least 35 people. He said the warplanes were believed to have been Russian.

"This is part of the campaign against Daesh," Abdurrahman said, using the Arabic acronym for the Islamic State group.

An amateur video posted online showed firefighters extinguishing the blaze in the market. Another video taken from outside Maaret al-Naasan showed thick black smoke billowing from the area shortly after the airstrike.

The video appeared genuine and corresponded to other AP reporting of the events.

Although other insurgent groups in Syria have been fighting against IS, fuel has been flowing from areas controlled by the extremists into rebel-held territory in return for other commodities such as vegetables and fruits.

Demand for diesel has been on the rise in northern Syria to fuel heaters during the winter; the attacks on oil facilities and tanker trucks have sharply increased the price of diesel.

The other airstrikes targeted a popular market in the village of Maskaneh in the northern province of Aleppo. The observatory said 12 were killed and dozens wounded while the LCC said 25 people perished.

It is common to have conflicting figures on the immediate aftermath of airstrikes or bombings in Syria.

Meanwhile in Moscow, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called Tuesday for the United States and Russia to find "common ground" on contentious differences over ending Syria's civil war, saying the world benefits when great powers agree in their approaches to major crises.

Russia and the U.S. are at odds over the mechanics of a political transition aimed at halting the war in Syria, as well as the military approach to fighting IS.

The conflict that began in March 2011 has killed more than 250,000 people.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov noted "outstanding issues" on steps in the Syrian political transition that is supposed to bring representatives of President Bashar Assad's government together with the opposition for negotiations by early January.

Also Tuesday, Al-Manar TV reported that Hezbollah militants killed IS religious chief Abu Abdullah Amer in the mountainous Qalamoun region that borders Lebanon. The channel, which is run by Hezbollah, said a Hezbollah fighter detonated a roadside bomb which struck Amer's passing convoy.

Hezbollah is an ally of Assad and has sent thousands of fighters into Syria to back Assad's forces.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • 'People just ran': Kentucky students fled for lives in fatal shooting

    World News CTV News
    BENTON, Ky. - They ran silently, too stunned to shout. Some of the children ran into classrooms to hide from the boy with the gun. Some ran out of the building, into the fields, across the streets, through the doors of nearby businesses. Source
  • Tempers flare as B.C. Liberal leadership candidates debate

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER - Tempers flared at the B.C. Liberal leadership debate in Vancouver as veterans butted heads over the future of the party with newer faces calling for change. Former cabinet ministers Mike de Jong, Andrew Wilkinson and Todd Stone faced off against backbenchers Sam Sullivan and Michael Lee, as well as former Surrey mayor and Conservative member of Parliament Dianne Watts. Source
  • California prosecutors seek to bar parents from contacting 13 kids kept captive

    World News CTV News
    Louise Anna Turpin, far left, with attorney Jeff Moore, second from left, and her husband David Allen Turpin, listen to attorney, David Macher, as they appear in court for their arraignment in Riverside, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018. Source
  • Puerto Rico awaits foreclosure wave as mortgage moratoriums expire

    World News CTV News
    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - Aylsa Torres sighed in relief when she received a letter from her bank two weeks after Hurricane Maria hit. She was among the hundreds of thousands of Puerto Ricans awarded a three-month moratorium on their mortgage payments as the U.S. Source
  • Philippine volcano spreads lava three kilometres from crater

    World News CTV News
    LEGAZPI, Philippines - Lava fountaining regularly from the Philippines' most active volcano has flowed up to 3 kilometres from the crater in a dazzling but increasingly dangerous eruption. Mount Mayon has spewed lava up to 600 metres high at times Tuesday and early Wednesday and its ash plumes stretched up to 5 kilometres above the crater. Source
  • Activists rip Kim Jong Un's photo in Olympic protest

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - Anti-Pyongyang activists on Wednesday ripped photos of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in the latest protests in Seoul against South Korea's outreach to North Korea over next month's Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. Source
  • D.C. sniper requests hearing to ask for lower sentence

    World News CTV News
    RICHMOND, Va. - A sniper who randomly killed 10 people and terrorized the Washington, D.C., region more than 15 years ago is entitled to a new hearing to ask for a lighter sentence, his lawyer argued Tuesday to a federal appeals court. Source
  • Calgary skydiver killed in California after crash onto roof of home

    World News CBC News
    Authorities have identified a skydiver who died Monday afternoon when he fell onto the roof of a home in Southern California. The Riverside County coroner's bureau says the victim was Aime-Jean St. Hilaire-Adam, a 27-year-old from Calgary. Source
  • Skepticism, worry amid preparation for Rohingya repatriation

    World News CTV News
    YANGON, Myanmar -- Myanmar says it's ready for a gradual repatriation of Muslim Rohingya refugees chased out by the Buddhist-majority country's military. Bangladesh says it's preparing for the transfer, but it might need more time. Source
  • Philippine volcano spreads lava almost three kilometres from crater

    World News CTV News
    LEGAZPI, Philippines -- Lava fountaining regularly from the Philippines' most active volcano has flowed up to 3 kilometres (1.86 miles) from the crater in a dazzling but increasingly dangerous eruption. Mount Mayon has spewed lava up to 600 metres (2,000 feet) high at times Tuesday and early Wednesday and its ash plumes stretched up to 5 kilometres (3 miles) above the crater. Source