Seven killed in Russian strikes on Syria - monitor, rescuers

White Helmets, or Syrian Civil Defense, rescuers search through the rubble following airstrikes on a countryside area, in Jisr al Shuqhur, Idlib province, Syria in this handout image released July 22, 2022. White Helmets/Handout via REUTERS

BEIRUT, July 22 (Reuters) - Russian air strikes on a rural swath of northwest Syria on Friday killed at least seven people including four children, a war monitoring group and rescuers said, following months of relative calm in the area.

Four strikes by aircraft identified as Russian by ground spotters hit the countryside in Idlib, the last rebel-held zone in war-torn Syria, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors such events in the war as operations and casualties.

The four children killed had been siblings, the Britain-based group said.

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The White Helmets rescue group gave the same figures and said another dozen people, among them eight children, had been wounded in the strikes.

Russia has been carrying out air strikes in Syria since 2015, helping its ally President Bashar al-Assad reclaim territory from rebels and extremist groups.

The strikes had become increasingly rare in recent months, the war monitoring group said.

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Reporting by Maya Gebeily; Editing by Bradley Perrett

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