Syrian army shelling of hospital kills seven in rebel held northwest Syria - witnesses

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Syrian government forces arrive in the town of Tal Tamr, not far from the flashpoint Kurdish Syrian town of Ras al-Ain on the border with Turkey. (Delil Souleiman, AFP)
Syrian government forces arrive in the town of Tal Tamr, not far from the flashpoint Kurdish Syrian town of Ras al-Ain on the border with Turkey. (Delil Souleiman, AFP)

  • Seven people have been killed and at least 14 medics injured when artillery shelling hit a hospital in north western Syria.
  • The artillery shelling damaged a hospital ward in the city of Atareb.
  • A woman and child are among those who were killed.

Seven civilians were killed and at least 14 medics were injured when artillery shelling from a Syrian army outpost hit a hospital in a rebel-held town in north western Syria on Sunday, medics and rescuers said.

They said a woman and a child were among those killed when several mortar rounds hit the hospital in the city of Atareb which was taken out of service.

Turkey's defence ministry earlier said on Sunday five people were killed and 10 injured in an artillery attack by Damascus-backed forces on a hospital in the northwest Syria, where they have a military presence.

Videos received by Reuters from two witnesses showed a ward damaged and civil defence rescuers carrying blood-stained patients outside. Reuters could not verify their authenticity.

Fighting between Syrian army forces and rebels has subsided since a deal a year ago ended a Russian-led bombing campaign that had displaced over a million people in the region which borders Turkey after months of fighting that killed several thousand civilians.

Residents say although there has been no flare-up of major hostilities, the calm is occasionally ruptured by Russian strikes on rebel outposts and frequent Iranian and Syrian-backed militias shelling towns and cities in the enclave where nearly four million civilians live.

Syria and Russia says it only targets militants Islamists whom it says hold sway and denies any indiscriminate shelling of civilian areas or being behind the deliberate targeting of dozens of hospitals during last year's campaign.

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