15:46 GMT18 May 2021
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    The Russian Defense Ministry has denied reports of airstrikes by its air force against residential areas in the Damascus suburb which had allegedly resulted in the deaths of 37 civilians.

    "Russian aviation does not carry out airstrikes against residential areas in Eastern Ghouta and does not use, unlike the US-led international coalition, incendiary shells. The reports that are disseminated by 'White Helmets' — fraudsters exploiting human grief – ‘White Helmets’, as well as the UK-based 'Syrian Observatory For Human Rights' — are notorious lies," the department said.

    According to residents of East Ghouta who left the embattled suburb with the assistance of the Russian Reconciliation Center, representatives of the "White Helmets" operate only in areas controlled by Nusra Front terrorists, the ministry stressed. The ministry added that the "White helmets" had never help civilians.

    READ MORE: Syrian Army to Take Second East Ghouta Pocket as Militants Agree Transfer Deal

    The ministry stressed that representatives of Syria's armed opposition, who were evacuated from East Ghouta to Idlib, had confirmed that the "White helmets" do not support civilians.

    "Thus readiness by some European media outlets to blindly quote any false information from the ‘White Helmets’ causes bewilderment," — the statement stressed.

    The statement comes in wake of media reports, citing the "White Helmets," that the Russian Air Force had conducted airstrikes against the town of Abrin in East Ghouta, killing at least 37 people.

    * A terrorist organization banned in Russia


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