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Death toll in Syrian rebel town rises following explosion

At least 67 people were killed in the incident in Sarmada.

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A fire at the scene of an explosion that hit a five-story building (Syrian Civil Defence/AP)

A fire at the scene of an explosion that hit a five-story building (Syrian Civil Defence/AP)

A fire at the scene of an explosion that hit a five-story building (Syrian Civil Defence/AP)

A Syrian search-and-rescue group has said the death toll from an explosion that destroyed two apartment buildings in a rebel-held town in the country’s north-west has risen to 67.

The Civil Defence, also known as the White Helmets, said rescuers are still searching through the rubble in Sarmada, looking for survivors from the blast. It says 35 wounded people have already been found.

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The blast is said to have destroyed two buildings (Syrian Civil Defence/AP)

The blast is said to have destroyed two buildings (Syrian Civil Defence/AP)

AP/PA Images

The blast is said to have destroyed two buildings (Syrian Civil Defence/AP)

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights gave a slightly higher death toll, saying 69 died, including 17 children. The Observatory said 52 of the victims were civilians, while the rest were militants or could not be identified.

The Observatory said an arms depot in the basement of a building had detonated, bringing down two five-storey apartment buildings.

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