|561 Hezbollah fighters killed in Syria since 2013||
At least 561 Hezbollah fighters have been killed in Syria since it began openly fighting on the side of the government early last year, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition-aligned group that documents causalities in the conflict, reported on Thursday.
The opposition National Syrian Coalition said 15 fighters from Lebanon’s Hezbollah had been martyred in recent battles against Syrian terrorists in the village of Flita in Syria’s mountainous Qalamoun region on the border with Lebanon.
“In Qalamoun, 15 members of the terrorist Hezbollah militia have been killed in clashes with fighters in the outskirts of Flita,” the coalition said in a statement Thursday, according to the Daily star.
The resistance party says it is fighting in Syria to prevent terrorists from bringing the battle into Lebanon. Syrian rebels have been blamed for a spate of car bombs that rocked Lebanon over the past year, mainly targeting areas with Shia majorities and Lebanese Army positions.
Hezbollah and government forces retook a number of villages on the Syrian side of the border this spring, including Flita. The government, backed by Hezbollah, has worked in recent months to clear out the remaining terrorists from Qalamoun, which has been used as a transit point for rebels and weapons entering the country from Lebanon.
Dozens of terrorists killed in army operation
Syria’s government troops killed dozens of ISIL takfiri terrorists in heavy clashes around the Tabqa military airport in Raqqa province on Thursday.
State news agency SANA quoted an unnamed military official as saying that “large numbers of terrorists were wiped out” near the air base.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an anti-group, said at least 11 and possibly “dozens” of ISIL militants were killed.
Documented death toll at least 191,369
Meanwhile, at least 191,369 people have been killed in Syria's conflict through April, more than double the figure documented a year ago and probably still an underestimate, the United Nations human rights office said Friday.
The UN report, based on data from four groups and the government that were cross-checked, reflects a reality of killing and torture while the war has "dropped off the international radar," UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said.
"With additional killings reported from earlier periods, in addition to the new killings that have taken place, the total is more than double the number documented a year ago," Pillay said in a statement.
An additional 51,953 killings that were reported lacked sufficient information and were excluded from the analysis, said the report issued in Geneva. A further significant number may not have been reported by any of the five sources, it added.
"The killers, destroyers and torturers in Syria have been empowered and emboldened by the international paralysis," Pillay said.
"It is essential governments take serious measures to halt the fighting and deter the crimes, and above all stop fuelling this monumental, and wholly avoidable, human catastrophe through the provision of arms and other military supplies," she said.
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