Regime attacks in Syria's E. Ghouta 'alarming': Turkey

President Hassan Rohani greets Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu at the start of their meeting at the presidency office in Tehran Iran

President Hassan Rohani greets Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu at the start of their meeting at the presidency office in Tehran Iran

Veale said they suspect the Syrian pro-government forces were trying to seize terrain from the US -backed forces liberated from IS militants past year, including major oil fields in the area.

In this photo, Syrian civil defense volunteers and other civilians attempt to remove rubble from the site of a collapsed building to rescue victims following reported regime air strikes in the rebel-held town of Arbin, in the besieged Eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, on February 6, 2018. In the Idlib province that is now held by rebels, six others were killed by air strikes.

CNN could not independently verify these claims or videos.

State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert called out Russian Federation on Thursday for enabling the Syrian regime's use of chemical weapons on civilians.

"The situation in East Ghouta is worse than it has ever been", the Syrian American Medical Society said in a news release.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which reports on the war using what it describes as a range of sources on all sides, said the air strikes had killed 229 people in the last four days, the Eastern Ghouta's biggest weekly toll since 2015.

Among them were at least 58 children, the Observatory said. The monitoring group did not mention allegations of chlorine use in Tuesday's attacks.

The overnight air strikes were confirmed by Syria's state-run radio network, which reported dozens of people were killed and many others left wounded. "These attacks further compound civilian suffering, and are leading to large numbers of new displacements", said Swedish Ambassador Olof Skoog.

The US-led coalition battling the Islamic State group said Wednesday it had carried out defensive strikes in the eastern Deir Ezzor region against Syrian pro-regime forces.

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A fourth consecutive day of heavy regime bombing raids on the rebel-held enclave of Eastern Ghouta near Damascus killed 22 civilians on Thursday, a monitor said.

Those attacks killed about 100 Syrian soldiers, the US military said.

Nauert's statement also references recent reports of chemical weapons allegedly used by the regime against rebel strongholds.

Paris and Washington agreed they were ready to respond in a co-ordinated manner to any new chemical attack by the Syrian regime.

President Bashar al-Assad, who has seized a clear advantage in the war with Russian and Iranian help, is hammering two of the last key rebel pockets of Syria - the Eastern Ghouta outside Damascus and Idlib in the northwest near the Turkish border.

"Attacks on health facilities in Idlib Governorate continued with an alarming frequency", it added.

As many as 150 airstrikes were conducted by Russian Federation on Idlib province, between Sunday and Monday. Its pilot was reported to have died after exchanging fire with the rebels.

The Idlib area is home to more than 1.1 million of Syria's 6.5 million internally displaced people, many of whom escaped other formerly opposition-held areas after they were overrun by government forces, according to United Nations figures.

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