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Syria Death Toll Tops 150,000, Says Watchdog

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says it documented the deaths of 150,344 people in the three-year-old civil war.
By Arutz Sheva Staff
First Publish: 4/2/2014, 4:16 AM

Syrian rebels take positions in Aleppo
Syrian rebels take positions in Aleppo
Reuters

The death toll in the three-year-old Syrian civil war has topped 150,000, a monitoring group said on Tuesday, according to AFP.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said it had documented the deaths of 150,344 people, 51,212 of them civilians, including nearly 7,985 children.

The group said 37,781 members of the armed opposition had been killed in the fighting, including members of jihadist groups the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), and Al-Qaeda affiliate Al-Nusra Front.

A total of 58,480 regime forces, including more than 35,000 soldiers had also been killed, according to the group.

Among those killed fighting on the government side were 364 members of Lebanon's Hezbollah, the Observatory added.

Another 2,871 people were recorded as having died but their identities remained unknown, the group said.

In January, the British-based Observatory, which relies on a network of sources on the ground in Syria, said the death toll up that point had been more than 130,000.

The Syrian civil war began with peaceful anti-government demonstrations and deteriorated into a full blown civil war as President Bashar Al-Assad cracked down on the protesters.

Things became more complicated in Syria when jihadist rebel groups, some of which pledged allegiance to Al-Qaeda, joined the fighting.

A 13-member Islamic Front for the Liberation of Syria at one point split off from the Western-backed Syrian National Council opposition force and declared Aleppo to be an independent Islamist state.

Since that time, a second civil war has begun in war-ravaged Syria and now, in addition to fighting the Syrian army, the more moderate rebel groups and the Islamist extremist groups are also fighting each other.

Making matters more complicated is the fact that there have also been numerous clashes between rebel groups and Kurdish militias in the north of the country.