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Regime attack on Syria's Ghouta kills seven: monitor

A picture taken on February 1, 2018, shows members of the civil defence removing the remnants of a rocket reportedly fired by regime forces on the outskirts of the rebel-held besieged Syrian town of Douma in Eastern Ghouta region.According to the Syrian observatory for human rights, rockets were fired on the outskirts of Douma, and three people suffered respiratory problems, with local inhabitants speaking to the Syrian observatory of a chemical attack.
A picture taken on February 1, 2018, shows members of the civil defence removing the remnants of a rocket reportedly fired by regime forces on the outskirts of the rebel-held besieged Syrian town of Douma in Eastern Ghouta region.According to the Syrian observatory for human rights, rockets were fired on the outskirts of Douma, and three people suffered respiratory problems, with local inhabitants speaking to the Syrian observatory of a chemical attack. AFP
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Beirut (AFP)

Bombardment by the Syrian regime killed at least seven civilians Friday in the rebel-held enclave of Eastern Ghouta, east of Damascus, a monitoring group reported.

The bloodshed came a day after the latest suspected chlorine attack by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad on Ghouta, which has been besieged by government forces since 2013.

Senior US administration officials on Thursday said President Donald Trump did not rule out military action, such as the cruise missiles fired at a Syrian airfield in April 2017.

On Friday, at least three civilians, including a child, were killed in air strikes on the town of Arbin, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The Britain-based war monitor, which relies on a network of sources on the ground across Syria, said shelling killed another four civilians, including in Ghouta's main town of Douma.

The Observatory could not confirm local reports of a chlorine attack on the Eastern Ghouta region on Thursday but it reported at least two likely uses of chlorine in attacks in January.

US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said Friday that chlorine gas was known to have been weaponised "repeatedly" in attacks in Syria lately.

"We are even more concerned about the possibility of sarin use, and we are looking for the evidence," he said.

Syria's war has killed more than 340,000 people and displaced millions since it began in March 2011 with the brutal repression of anti-government protests.

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