BEIRUT (AP) - Syrian activists say government airstrikes and shelling have killed at least 19 civilians in Damascus suburbs where rebels have held out against government forces throughout the nearly seven years of the country's civil war.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says that government jets and artillery launched a wave of attacks in the Eastern Ghouta area on Sunday. The observatory says that by midday, 19 people were killed.
The locally-run Ghouta Media Center says 22 civilians have been killed.
Conditions are dire inside the area, which is suffering from shortages of food and medicine due to the tightening government blockade. The U.N. says there are some 350,000 people in need of immediate relief in Eastern Ghouta.
Earlier this month, Syrian rebels attacked a nearby military installation in the area.
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