As many as 674 civilians have been killed in nearly two weeks by the continuous air attacks on the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta, a Syrian volunteer group has said, Al Jazeera reported.
The Syrian Civil Defense, also known as the White Helmets, said on Friday that more than 670 people have been killed since the Syrian government, aided by Russia, launched an air offensive on the largely rural area outside the capital on February 18.
Eastern Ghouta, home to nearly 400,000 people, has been besieged by the Syrian government since opposition groups took control of the area in mid-2013.
The aerial bombardment has drawn international condemnation, but a 30-day ceasefire unanimously voted for by the members of the United Nations Security Council last Saturday has largely failed to hold, as air raids have continued unabated.
“Since the so-called ceasefire up until now, 103 people have been killed,” said Mahmood Adam, a member of the White Helmets – a 4,000-strong volunteer group.
Among them, Adam said, were 22 children and 43 women.
“The systematic targeting by Syrian and Russian aeroplanes of residential areas in Eastern Ghouta has not stopped,” he told Al Jazeera.