News Update :

Violence rages across Syria

Saturday, July 21, 2012

DAMASCUS  - Heavy fighting erupted between Syrian troops and rebels on Saturday, with at least 24 people were killed across the country, when the clock struck down a 30-day "final" extension of a mission of UN observers in trouble.

Activists reported heavy fighting in Aleppo second largest city, with regime forces shelling several neighborhoods, including at least seven people died in the capital, most killed by snipers.
The violence came a day after the Security Council voted unanimously to grant a "final" 30 day extension to the Monitoring Mission of Syria to the UN in charge of overseeing a peace plan in tatters.

Speaking in Croatia on Saturday, UN chief Ban Ki-moon said he was "deeply saddened by the growing number of victims", warning that the limited extension of the UN mission was "the responsibility lies primarily with the parties with the Government of Syria in the first place to stop the killings. "

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported clashes in several districts of Aleppo, particularly in the central district of Salaheddin. "Violent clashes take place between the Syrian regime's forces and rebel fighters in the area and the area Haydariya Sakhur," he said, adding troops were "using heavy machine guns and artillery." By midafternoon, the Centre said the death toll across the country was at 24, including 12 civilians, four soldiers and eight rebels.
And in Homs, a prison riot was in progress the city center, an activist told AFP, saying he feared "a slaughter" in the facility, which was surrounded by tanks defected after several guards and prisoners took over part of the jail.
The rate of violence in the country will be boosted in recent days, especially after Wednesday's attack - claimed by the rebel army of Syria free - that killed four members of the regime of high level, including the chief of security General Hisham Ikhtiyar national, who died of his injuries on Friday.

The others killed in the blast, Defense Minister General Daud Rajha, Assad's brother-in-law Assef Shawkat and General Hassan Turkmani, head of the crisis on the lifting scheme, were given a state funeral Friday. The death toll across the country the day after the attack stood at 302 people, the highest 16-month uprising, said the observatory.
The rebels took a second of the three main border crossing between Iraq and Syria after the other to maintain control despite heavy bombardment by the forces of President Bashar al-Assad, told AFP the Iraqi authorities.

The death toll across the country the day after the attack stood at 302 people, the highest 16-month uprising, said the observatory. The FSA took control of the crossing Yaribiyah, known in Iraq as Rabiyah, afternoon and raised his flag, while officials said the refugees had tried to enter Iraq, but Baghdad ordered his security forces are not allowed to cross the border into the country.
Two Syrian brigadier general fled to Turkey during the night, a group of about 10 people including colonels and other military officers.

The latest defections would make the overall number of Syrians who take refuge in Turkey to 24. A survey of 16 months in Syria, has unleashed a refugee crisis in Turkey and its other neighbors. Over 43,000 refugees are registered as residents in Turkey.

(AFP / Reuters)
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