Monitor says Syrian army and allies killed 48 in Aleppo offensive

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A monitoring group said on Saturday Syrian government forces and allied militants killed 48 fighters and family members during last week's offensive against opposition-held areas in Aleppo province, but the army denied it. "I deny completely such an act that cannot be committed by the Syrian army whose duty is to protect lives and not kill people," a military source told Reuters. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Saturday the dead were shot mainly in their homes in the village of Raitan on Tuesday shortly after the village fell to the army and loyalist forces including Iranian fighters and members of Lebanese Hezbollah. Rami Abdul Rahman, the head of the monitor, said his group confirmed the killings in the village from locals.