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Death toll in northwest Syria blast climbs to 28: monitor

May 14, 2018

BEIRUT: At least 28 people, including civilians and jihadist fighters, were killed in a car bombing in the northwestern Syrian city of Idlib, a monitor said Sunday in a new toll.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said those killed in Saturday's blast included at least five civilians and 10 members of the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham jihadist group, which is led by Syria's former al-Qaeda branch.

Eight people accused of belonging to the Islamic State group were also among the dead, while five other bodies have not yet been identified, the Britain-based Observatory said. The monitor had given an earlier toll of nine people killed.

Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman said the car bombing targeted a tribunal in Idlib set up by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham where alleged IS members were detained. In recent months, several explosions have rocked Idlib province, which has witnessed infighting between competing jihadist groups opposed to President Bashar al-Assad. Syria's war has killed more than 350,000 people and displaced millions since it started in 2011 with a brutal crackdown on anti-government demonstrations.