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Air Strikes Kill Dozens In Syria's Aleppo: Monitor Group

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[April 21, 2014]  BEIRUT (Reuters)  Dozens of people have been killed in air strikes on the northern Syrian city of Aleppo, a monitoring group said on Monday, including at least 29 people in a single neighborhood.

Also on Monday, state news agency SANA said two people were killed when mortars struck central Damascus.

The opposition Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said air strikes killed 29 people on Sunday, including women and children, in the southern Al-Ferdous district of Aleppo, a city that was once Syria's largest and a major commercial hub.

Another 14 people were killed in the Baeedeen neighborhood in "barrel bomb" attacks  strikes in which helicopters drop highly destructive improvised explosives  the group said. A further five died in barrel bomb attacks in the village of Tlajabin, it added.

Western powers have condemned the use of barrel bombs as a war crime, but they continue to fall nearly every day in Aleppo and other parts of Syria.

SANA said two people were killed in Damascus when mortars fired by "terrorists"  its term for rebel fighters  hit the Al-Salihiya neighborhood of the capital and a nearby area.

More than 150,000 people have been killed in Syria's conflict, which started as a peaceful protest movement against President Bashar al-Assad's rule in March 2011 and turned into civil war after a government crackdown.

(Reporting by Alexander Dziadosz; editing by Ruth Pitchford)

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