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The Latest: HRW says US-led coalition Syria strike killed 84

September 25, 2017 12:26 PM

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — The Latest on the Syrian conflict (all times local):

7:15 p.m.

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An international human rights group says two airstrikes by the U.S.-led coalition on northern Syria earlier this year killed 84 civilians, including 30 children.

Human Rights Watch said Monday the attack raises concerns that the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group did not take "adequate precautions to minimize civilian casualties."

The coalition has been targeting IS in Syria since September 2014. Airstrikes intensified in recent months as the extremists are being squeezed on several fronts by different groups.

HRW said it documented coalition attacks in March on a school housing displaced families in the town of Mansourah and a market and a bakery in the town of Tabqa, west of the city of Raqqa. It said IS fighters were present at the sites and so were scores of civilians.

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4 p.m.

Russia has denied carrying out an airstrike that a U.S.-backed Syrian force said killed one of its fighters.

The Syrian Democratic Forces said a Russian airstrike on Monday killed one of its fighters and wounded two others in a gas field in eastern Syria that they had recently captured from the Islamic State group.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said in a statement that Russia is continuing to target IS militants in the area, and that its surveillance does not show SDF forces fighting IS.

Konashenkov said neither the SDF nor the U.S-led coalition has approached it about the reported attack.

On Sept. 16, the SDF said a Russian airstrike wounded six of its fighters, but Moscow denied carrying out the attack.

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3:15 p.m.

The main U.S-backed Syrian force fighting the Islamic State group says a Russian airstrike on a gas field it recently captured from the extremists killed one of its fighters.

A statement issued by the Syrian Democratic Forces said two other fighters were wounded in Monday's strike in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour.

It says the attack occurred on the Conoco gas field, which the SDF captured from IS on Saturday.

On Sept. 16, the SDF said a Russian airstrike wounded six of its fighters, but Moscow denied carrying out the attack. Russian officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the latest allegation.

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1:30 p.m.

Syrian state media say two people have been killed in shelling on President Bashar Assad's ancestral village of Qardaha.

Syria's state broadcaster said Monday the village has been shelled by "terrorists" for two days straight. It says two people were wounded Sunday.

Qardaha is located in the coastal mountains of northwest Syria. Assad's father, the late president Hafez Assad, was born in Qardaha. He was buried there in 2000.

The village has been largely spared from the violence of Syria's civil war, which grew out of demonstrations in 2011 against the Assad family's four-decade rule.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also reported the shelling, saying two civilians have been killed.

Credits

(Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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