Alleged Russian airstrike kills Turkey-backed gunmen in north Syria

Warplanes have attacked Turkey-backed opposition fighters in northern Syria, killing and wounding about 20, an opposition war monitor and pro-government media say.

The airstrike earlier today struck a position in an area near the town of Afrin. It comes amid increasing tensions between government forces and insurgent groups who still have a stronghold in northwestern Syria, mainly in the province of Idlib.

The airstrike was carried out by Russian warplanes, opposition activists say.

The airstrike hit a center for a Turkey-backed group known as the Hamza Division, killing seven fighters and wounding 13, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Pro-government media also reports Russian airstrikes near Afrin, saying that a number of gunmen have been killed or wounded.

Russia joined the war in September 2015 helping tip the balance of power in favor of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces, while Turkey has been a main backer of the opposition.

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