February 3, 2016 1:59 pm

Footage shows child victims of Russian-backed Syrian airstrikes

WATCH ABOVE: Footage shows Syrian boy rescued from concrete slab crushing his head


Footage out of Syria shows children struggling in the aftermath of airstrikes near Aleppo that reportedly broke a long running rebel siege in two Shiite villages.

A local media activist group called “Hretan City” published the footage Tuesday of a young Syrian boy in Haritan struggling to survive – his head caught underneath a massive concrete slab among the rubble.

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The unidentified boy could be seen breathing slowly and cried out before aid workers were able to pry him free to safety with a visible wound on his forehead.

The boy’s rescue went viral and has been viewed more than 300,000 times on Facebook.

A second video, published by the same advocacy group, showed volunteers weep as they embraced the lifeless body of a little girl.

Syrian state-run TV and Lebanon’s Hezbollah TV say the siege of two villages north – Nubl and Zahra – was ended Wednesday by the army and Shiite militias known as the Popular Defense Committees.

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WATCH: Scenes of destruction at Haritan’s public information office

North Aleppo has been a focus of struggle between rebels and the Syrian Army during the ongoing Syrian Civil War. Both Nubl and Zahra, located in the middle of opposition territory, have been blockaded by rebel groups for roughly three years.

Their capture would mark a major victory for government forces, which have made significant advances in the province in the past few days.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition activist group that monitors the conflict, says more than 100 airstrikes have hit the region and the Syrian army was one kilometer away from the two villages at the time of the latest strike.

*With files from The Associated Press

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