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The New Arab

Scores killed and injured in bloody day of airstrikes in Syria’s Idlib

Civil Defence members evacuated victims of the regime and Russian strikes [Getty]

Date of publication: 3 December, 2019

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At least 19 people have been killed and 50 injured in dozens of airstrikes by the Assad regime and Russia in Idlib province, following a stalled regime ground offensive.

Nineteen people were killed and 50 injured in a bloody day of indiscriminate airstrikes by Russian and Assad regime forces on rebel-held Idlib province in northwestern Syria.

Sources from the Syrian Civil Defence, also known as the White Helmets, told The New Arab's Arabic-language service that 10 people were killed in an airstrike on a vegetable market in the city of Maarat al-Numan in the south of Idlib province, two of them women.

Six people were killed when a prison was bombed on the outskirts of Idlib city during family visiting hours. Among those killed were a woman and two children visiting their families.

Read more: Assad regime marks World Children's Day by bombing refugee camp with ballistic missiles

Another civilian was killed in an airstrike on a market in Saraqeb according to the Civil Defence.

The Civil Defence said that a total of 50 civilians had been injured in the airstrikes, including six children and two women.

A total of 53 airstrikes were recorded on Idlib province, 25 of them by Syrian regime helicopters dropping barrel bombs, while the rest were by Russian aircraft.

Russia and the Assad regime resumed their airstrikes on Idlib province at the beginning of November, following a two-month lull.

At least 277 people were killed in airstrikes last month, according to the Syrian Network for Human Rights even though the province is officially a "de-escalation zone" according to a September 2018 agreement between Russia, Turkey, and Iran.

Monday's escalation came after regime attempts to advance in southeastern Idlib province which were fiercely resisted by rebels, who killed dozens of regime troops in clashes.

Idlib province is home to roughly 3 million people, nearly half of them displaced from other parts of Syria.

Airstrikes on the southern part of the province have led to a new wave of displacement, with more than 600,000 people fleeing their homes since April. Every single hospital in southern Idlib has now been destroyed by airstrikes.

The Syrian conflict broke out in 2011 after the Assad regime brutally suppressed pro-democracy protests.

More than 500,000 people have been killed and millions more displaced, mostly as a result of Assad regime and Russian bombardment of civilian areas.

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