After reports surfaced that at least 11 people were killed in Russian airstrikes on the rebel-held province of Idlib, the UN expressed grave concern about a deterioration of hostilities in northwest Syria.
Rescuers reported that nine people were killed on Sunday when bombs were dropped by warplanes next to a market outside Jisr al-Shughour.
According to the monitoring organization Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, it was Russia's deadliest attack of the year.
According to it, two more people perished in an airstrike near the city of Idlib.
The Syrian government's air campaign, which has been instrumental in shifting the 12-year civil war in its favor, received no immediate response from the Russian military. .
But according to the Syrian Defense Ministry, its troops worked with the Russian air force in an operation that targeted "terrorist headquarters and warehouses" in Idlib and "eliminated dozens of terrorists.".
According to the statement, the attacks were in retaliation for assaults that had resulted in the deaths of civilians in the provinces of Hama and Latakia, which are under government control.
The Syrian Observatory reported that since Wednesday, jihadist and rebel groups have killed a total of six civilians in drone and artillery attacks. Over the same time period, government artillery and Russian airstrikes had claimed the lives of 15 civilians and four fighters.
The majority of those killed close to Jisr al-Shughour, according to the White Helmets, whose first responders work in opposition-held areas, were farmers and workers at a nearby vegetable market. This market was next to the location that the Russian strike was targeting.
Mohammed claimed that he was at the market loading tomatoes and aubergines onto vehicles when a bomb went off.
My neighbor was screaming next to me when I turned around. He was "carried [to safety] by me," he told the AFP news agency. "Some of the [vehicle] owners suffered injuries, while others lost their lives. ".
Children were reportedly among the injured, and the White Helmets warned that the death toll might increase because several people were in critical condition.
It warned that "attacks on civilians in Syria continue unabated and without resolution, trapping Syrians in a never-ending cycle of tragedy and despair.".
The conflict that broke out after President Bashar al-Assad violently put down peaceful pro-democracy protests in 2011 has resulted in the deaths of more than 500,000 people.
2.9 million displaced people, many of whom are living in appalling conditions in camps, are housed in Idlib, the last-standing stronghold of the opposition.
A ceasefire to stop the government's attempt to retake Idlib was mediated by Russia and Turkey in March 2020. As a result, there was an extended period of calm, though occasional clashes, airstrikes, and shelling still took place.