Air strikes on a village in Syria’s opposition-held Idlib province have killed at least 38 people overnight, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said today.
“War planes, which are likely Russian, targeted the village of Zardana in northern rural Idlib overnight and caused the highest death toll in a single attack on the region since late March,” Rami Abdulrahman, the director of the UK-based war monitor said.
The death toll is expected to increase as some of the 50 injured in the strikes were in a critical condition, he said. Rescue workers were still searching under the rubble for survivors.
The northwestern Idlib region remains the largest populated area of Syria in the hands of the opposition fighting the Damascus government. It has become a refuge for around 2.5 million Syrians who fled as a result of the conflict and of the regime’s recapture of their hometowns.
In recent years, tens of thousands of fighters and civilians have fled there from parts of the country which the army has recaptured with the help of Russia and Iran.
In April, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian warned of a humanitarian crisis in Idlib which could be the regime’s next target.
“There is a risk of a new humanitarian disaster. Idlib’s fate must be settled by a political process, which includes disarming the militias,” he said.