At least 200 civilians were killed in Russian air strikes in Syria in the two months to the end of November, an Amnesty International report says.
Quoting witnesses, the human rights group accuses Russia of using cluster bombs in civilian areas and says such attacks could constitute war crimes.
Russia’s defence ministry dismissed the report as containing “fake information” and “trite cliches”.
It also rejected Amnesty’s accusations about cluster bombs, Reuters reports.
Amnesty said in its report it was also researching concerns about the US-led coalition air strikes in Syria.
The US has rarely acknowledged civilian deaths in its air bombardment of the so-called Islamic State (IS), which began in September 2014, although some monitoring groups say the toll could run into hundreds.
Russia began air strikes in September this year, saying it was acting at the request of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. It is targeting IS and other groups it designates as terrorists – some of which are backed by the West.
‘No military targets’
In the report, Amnesty said it had “researched remotely” more than 25 Russian attacks that took place in Homs, Hama, Idlib, Latakia and Aleppo between 30 September, when the Russian air campaign began, and 29 November.
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