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15 Dead After Warplanes Hit Near Aleppo Hospital

Was one of the last remaining sources of medical help for civilians there
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 22, 2012 8:08 AM CST

(Newser) – Syrian warplanes flattened a building next to a hospital last night, killing at least 15 people and damaging one of the last remaining sources of medical help for civilians in Aleppo, activists said. Once a private clinic owned by a businessman loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, the Dar al-Shifa became a field hospital run by volunteer doctors, nurses, and aides united by their opposition to the regime and the need to give medical care to both civilians and rebels.

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The facility has taken at least six direct hits in recent months, mostly affecting the upper floors. The seven-story hospital is only about 400 meters from the frontline in a neighborhood that is heavily shelled every day. The warplanes turned the building adjacent to the hospital into a pile of rubble and sprayed shrapnel and debris into Dar al-Shifa itself, activists said. One activist tells the AP that at least 11 fighters were killed in the raid, in addition to a doctor, a young girl, and two children who were on the street. Meanwhile, rebels seized a key military base with artillery stockpiles in the country's east today after a three-week siege, strengthening their hold in an oil-rich strategic province bordering Iraq, activists said. (Read more Aleppo stories.)

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