Russia on Wednesday rejected a report by rights group Amnesty International, which said that hundreds of civilians have been killed by the country's air strikes in Syria. A Russian Defence Ministry spokesperson said he saw "nothing specific and nothing new" in the report, said BBC, and that Amnesty has raised empty allegations with no way of checking the information. Amnesty on Wednesday said that Russia has mounted indiscriminate attacks on Syria, which has led to many civilian deaths, and that some attacks could "amount to war crimes". Agence-France Presse reported that Amnesty said some strikes struck residential areas that had "no evident military target and even medical facilities".
The group also said that Russia has been using internationally banned cluster munitions in these areas, and that this must be investigated. Its report added that Russia might have lied to cover up damage to a mosque and a field hospital amid its air strikes. Amnesty hit back after Russia denied its report, saying that, "The Russian government cannot credibly brush away these detailed findings with a few sweeping statements."
Russia has been carrying out attacks in Syria since September, purportedly against Islamic State militants in the country. Amnesty's report report said Russian attacks killed around 200 civilians in the Homs, Idlib and Aleppo provinces between September and November.