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Russian Strikes Said To Kill 36 Syrian Civilians, Including Five Children


The head of Syria's main opposition group says Russian air strikes on September 30 killed 36 civilians, including five children, a claim Russia immediately denied.

Khaled Khoja, head of the National Coalition, which includes opposition groups supported by the West, said local activists have identified 36 people who died in the central province of Homs.

"All of the casualties were civilians," Khoja said on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

"So it was very obvious that the Russian intervention was to support the regime, to support more killings inside Syria, and will create a more chaotic atmosphere."

The strikes also hit a base for the Free Syrian Army, but resulted in no casualties, he said.

Moscow insists that its 20 strikes hit Islamic State (IS) targets, but Khoja said there are no IS forces in the four areas struck.

A spokesman for Russia's Foreign Ministry called Khoja's claims "false" and part of an "information war."

She said there was little difference between the Russian strikes and French air strikes which earlier in the day were reported to have killed 30, including 12 child soldiers.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP
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