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14 killed as rebels blow up historic Aleppo hotel

Beirut, May 8 (AP): A rebel-claimed bombing today in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo levelled a once luxurious hotel near the ancient Citadel that government troops used as a military base, causing multiple casualties, activists and militants said.

Syrian state television said the explosion struck the Carlton Hotel in a government-held area on the edge of a contested neighbourhood in the old part of Aleppo.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which maintains a network of activists on the ground, said at least 14 soldiers were killed in the blast.

The Islamic Front, Syria’s biggest rebel alliance which claimed the attack, claimed to have killed 50 soldiers. Both groups did not say how they know how many soldiers died, and the claims could not be independently verified.

In a live broadcast from the site of blast, the station’s correspondent in Aleppo stood on a huge pile of rubble with twisted metal and palm trees sticking out, saying that the army had been using the building as a base.

 
 
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