Syrian child footballer killed by shells on Damascus: State media

The latest strike on Damascus came despite rebels clearing out of several holdouts around Ghouta under evacuation deals.
The latest strike on Damascus came despite rebels clearing out of several holdouts around Ghouta under evacuation deals.PHOTO: EPA-EFE

DAMASCUS (AFP) - Rockets fired by rebels on the outskirts of Damascus killed a young Syrian footballer and wounded seven others as they were training in the capital, state media said on Saturday (March 24).

SANA said the rockets hit a sports club in the capital's Mazraa neighbourhood, which also hosts the Russian embassy.

Mohsen Abbas, who coaches the youth league of the Syrian army's football team, named the young victim as 12-year-old Samir Mohamad Massoud.

"They hit the Al-Fayhaa sports centre with a shell, which took the life of a child and wounded seven others as they were training," said Abbas.

Al-Fayhaa is the capital's most well-known gym and the country's national teams train there.

It has been hit several times by rebels based on the outskirts of the capital, in their dwindling Eastern Ghouta enclave.

The latest strike on Damascus came despite rebels clearing out of several holdouts around Ghouta under evacuation deals.

Opposition forces now hold less than ten percent of Ghouta after a more than month-old Syrian government assault has overrun the vast majority of the enclave.