Vastavam web: A barrage of Russian air strikes on rebel-held areas of southern Syria killed 22 civilians today, a monitoring group said, most of them in a single battered town. “At least 35 Russian air strikes hit the town of Al-Mseifra,” the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. “One of them hit a basement where people were taking shelter, killing 17 civilians, including five children,” the Britain-based monitor said. Another five civilians were killed in other rebel-controlled areas of Daraa, the main province in southern Syria.
“This is the highest toll since the escalation began on June 19,” said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman. Government forces have been ramping up their bombardment of rebel-held areas of the south since June 19, and allied Russian warplanes carried out their first raids on the region in a year on June 23.