Syrians gather amidst destruction in Zardana, in the mostly rebel-held northern Syrian Idlib province, in the aftermath of following air strikes in the area late on June 8, 2018 (Photo: AFP)
Air strikes likely by Russia on a village in Syria's rebel-held Idlib province killed at least 44 people overnight, inflicting the highest death toll in a single attack on the region this year, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Friday.
"War planes, which are likely Russian, targeted the village of Zardana in northern rural Idlib overnight and caused the highest death toll in a single attack on the region including 11 women and six children," Rami Abdulrahman, the director of the Britain-based war monitor said.
The death toll is expected to increase as some of the 60 injured in the strikes were in a critical condition, he said. Rescue workers were still searching under the rubble for survivors.
The northwestern Idlib region remains the largest populated area of Syria in the hands of insurgents fighting the Damascus government.
In recent years, tens of thousands of fighters and civilians have fled there from parts of the country which the army has recaptured with the help of Russia and Iran.