Sunday 11 December 2016

Dozens killed in air strikes on fuel market in Syria

Published 15/12/2015 | 16:06

The air strikes on the Syrian market are likely part of a campaign to target the oil trade that is a major source of income for IS
The air strikes on the Syrian market are likely part of a campaign to target the oil trade that is a major source of income for IS

Air strikes on a fuel market in a village in northern Syria have killed and wounded dozens of people and destroyed several tanker trucks, according to opposition monitoring groups.

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Activists said war planes also struck another market in the northern village of Maskaneh which is under the control of Islamic State, killing at least 12 people and wounding many others.

It was not immediately clear whose war planes 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 IS.

The air strikes on the market are likely part of a campaign to target the oil trade that is a major source of income for IS.

Russian war planes as well as those of the US-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 war planes have also struck oil facilities in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour in recent weeks.

The Local Co-ordination Committees (LCC) said Tuesday's air strikes on Maaret al-Naasan were carried out by Russian war planes and killed and wounded dozens of people.

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

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

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 other air strikes 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 died.

Press Association

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