New Strikes Kill 10 People in Rebel-Held Suburbs of Syrian Capital

In this photo released on Tuesday by the Syrian Civil Defense group known as the White Helmets, members of the Syrian Civil Defense extinguish a fire during airstrikes and shelling by Syrian government forces, in Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus, Syria. (Syrian Civil Defense White Helmets via AP)

The Syrian Civil Defense rescue organization says 10 people have been killed by government airstrikes and shelling on a town in the suburbs of Damascus.

The group, also known as the White Helmets, says government forces targeted Kafr Batna early Wednesday with airstrikes, artillery fire and barrel bombs — crude, explosives-filled oil drums dropped from helicopters at high altitudes.

The locally run Ghouta Media Center reported strikes on Kafr Batna and other towns in the rebel-held eastern Ghouta region outside Damascus.

Activists say there has been no letup to the wave of airstrikes and artillery shelling on eastern Ghouta since government and Russian forces stepped up their assault late Sunday. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says at least 250 civilians have been killed.

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