Death toll of Israeli strike in Syria rises to 42, war monitor says - UPDATED

Society 13:25 29.03.2024

The toll from an Israeli air strike on northern Syria's Aleppo province early on Friday has risen to 42, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, Ednews reports citing France 24.

"Forty-two killed, including six from Lebanon's Hezbollah group" and 36 Syrian soldiers in the Israeli strike targeting a Hezbollah weapons depot, said the war monitor.

****10:20

Israeli strikes on the northern Syrian city of Aleppo early on Friday killed 38 people, including five members of Lebanese armed group Hezbollah, two security sources said, Ednews informs via Reuters.

The Syrian defence ministry said earlier on Friday that a number of civilians and military personnel were killed after Israel and militant groups launched attacks against Aleppo.

The Israeli airstrikes targeted several areas in Aleppo's countryside at about 1:45 a.m. local time (2245 GMT), the ministry said a statement.

The airstrikes coincided with drone attacks carried out from Idlib and western rural Aleppo that the ministry described as having been conducted by "terrorist organisations" targeting civilians in Aleppo and its surroundings.

However, the ministry did not mention a specific death toll or clarify whether the casualties were caused by the Israeli airstrikes or the attacks by militant groups.

"The aggression resulted in the martyrdom and injury of a number of civilians and military personnel and caused material losses to public and private property," the statement said.

The Israeli military declined comment.

Since the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas on Israeli civilians and soldiers, Israel has escalated its strikes on what it says are bases of Iranian-backed militia in Syria. It has also struck Syrian army air defences and some Syrian forces.

Israel has for years carried out such attacks in Syria, where Tehran's influence has grown since it began supporting President Bashar al-Assad in a civil war that started in 2011.

Fighters allied with Iran, including Hezbollah, now hold sway in vast areas of eastern, southern and northwestern Syria and in several suburbs around the capital.

Israel and Hezbollah have been trading fire across the Israel-Lebanon border since the war erupted in Gaza, the biggest escalation since they fought a month-long conflict in 2006.

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