00:54 GMT02 December 2020
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    According to the Syrian state broadcaster Ikhbariya, citing local sources, the US-led coalition struck the town of Baghuz in Deir ez-Zor province on Monday. The airstrike claimed the lives of 16 civilians, including seven children, Ikhbariya reported.

    "Aviation of the international coalition has committed a new crime: 16 civilians, including seven children, were killed as a result of massive airstrikes on the village of Baghuz in the southeastern province of Deir ez-Zor", Ikhbariya television said.

    Earlier in the day, local media reported that at least four civilians were killed in an airstrike by the US-led coalition.

    Last Saturday, the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) announced the start of an operation aimed at liberating Baghuz from the Daesh terrorist group. The SDF claims that the village is the last settlement held by Daesh in Syria.

    SDF units are engaged in a fight against the terrorists and are backed by the US-led coalition, whose airstrikes in the region have resulted in multiple civilian casualties, according to Syrian media reports.

    WATCH: Footage of Iraqi, Coalition Airstrikes Against Daesh Remnants

    The coalition regularly carries out airstrikes in Deir ez-Zor. In January, Ikhbariya reported that at least 20 civilians were killed and several more wounded in a US-led coalition airstrike on a village in the province.

    Last year, the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported, citing local sources, that the US-led coalition had used prohibited cluster bombs in airstrikes on the city of Hajin and the village of  Shaafa. Previously, multiple Syrian media reports alleged that toxic white phosphorus munitions had also been used in the coalition's repeated attacks in the region.

    The Pentagon has dismissed the allegations as false, maintaining that the coalition’s airstrikes in Syria conform with the laws of armed conflict.

    READ MORE: At Least 13 Civilians Killed in Int'l Coalition Strike in Syria — Reports

    The US-led coalition of more than 70 countries has said it has conducted military operations against the Daesh in Syria and Iraq. The coalition's operations in Syria are not authorized by the government of President Bashar Assad or the UN Security Council.

    Syrian authorities have repeatedly called on the United Nations to hold those responsible for the civilian casualties accountable and put an end to the US-led coalition's unauthorized presence in Syrian territory.

    In December, US President Donald Trump announced the pullout of US troops from Syria, but gave no timeline for their withdrawal.

    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said last week that Washington would perform a well-coordinated withdrawal of its troops from Syria while continuing the fight against Daesh, adding that the US would count on its coalition partners and allies to permanently defeat the terror group.

    Daesh, also known as IS (Islamic State), ISIS, ISIL — a terrorist group, banned in numerous countries, including Russia


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    civilians, strike, casualties, US-led coalition, Syria
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