New air strikes on Syria's Aleppo kill, wound dozens
DAMASCUS - Agence France-Presse
Syrians search for survivors under the rubble following airstrikes by Syrian government forces on Dec 22, 2013 in a residential area of the northern Syrian city of Marea on the outskirts of Aleppo. AFP PHOTOSyria warplanes bombed the divided northern city of Aleppo, killing and wounding dozens of people Dec. 22, while a car bomb in Homs killed at least eight, including six schoolchildren.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) meanwhile said half a million people across war-torn Syria are wounded, with many lacking access to basic healthcare and treatment.
Hundreds of people have been killed over the past week in Aleppo as Syrian aircraft have dropped crude barrel bombs on the country's second city and onetime commercial hub, now largely reduced to rubble, according to activists, medics and other witnesses.
"Dozens of people were killed or wounded" when Syrian warplanes dropped barrel bombs near the Friday market in Aleppo on Sunday, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based group that relies on activists and other witnesses.
The group said separate attacks also targeted the rebel-held Sakhur, Ahmadiyeh, Baideen and Ard al-Hamra neighbourhoods of the city, which has been cleaved into regime- and rebel-held enclaves since the summer of 2012.
The Aleppo Media Centre, a network of citizen journalists on the ground, said the barrel bombs "destroyed a bus, leaving no survivors," and demolished around 10 cars and a residential building.
It added that "hospitals are packed with wounded," and said the number of dead could not yet be confirmed, as the bombing campaign continued into the afternoon.
Footage distributed by Shahba Press, another network of citizen journalists, showed children in a bombed-out school in Marea in the north of Aleppo province. One of the children said the school had been bombed multiple times while classes were being held.
The Syrian Revolution General Commission, a network of grassroots activists, described "panic and mass flight to the countryside, despite the intense cold." On Saturday, Human Rights Watch had accused regime forces of "wreaking disaster" in Aleppo with an aerial bombing campaign which has killed hundreds in the past week.
A car bombing in the Shiite village of Omm al-Amd in the central province of Homs, meanwhile, killed eight people, including six schoolchildren, the official SANA news agency reported.
The Observatory reported a higher death toll of at least 12, including five children.