Syrian government war planes have struck an eastern city that is a stronghold of an Islamic militant group, killing at least 12 people, opposition activists said.
The air strikes on the city of Raqqa, that has been under control of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isis) for over a year, appear to be part of an intensified Syrian government campaign against the al-Qaida breakaway group that has in recent weeks become a major fighting force in Iraq.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the jets struck targets including a market and the headquarters of Isis.
Another activist group also reported the strikes, saying that five people were killed in a single strike on the Isis building.
An opposition activist in Raqqa reported seven air strikes on the city of about 500,000 people. The activist, who goes by the name of Abu Noor, said 13 bodies of civilians have been identified.
The activists said only one of the air strikes hit the Isis headquarters while others targeted a civilian market.
Isis, along with other rebel groups fighting to overthrow Syrian president Bashar Assad, captured Raqqa in March 2013.
In Iraq, Isis fighters have captured major cities and towns in the north and also border crossings with Syria and Jordan from the Shiite-led government in Baghdad.
Also today, Syrian aircraft carried out a series of air strikes in the eastern, oil-rich province of Deir el-Zour. There were no reports of casualties.
In Deir el-Zour, at least two air strikes struck Muhassan, a town along the Euphrates River near Iraq that has been pounded daily by war planes.