Beirut: A Syrian activist group says government forces and Army defectors are engaging in fierce clashes in a town near the Turkish border.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says Friday`s clashes in the town of Azaz in the northern province of Aleppo have left at least three soldiers dead.
The Observatory, which has a network of activists around Syria, said military helicopters were seen flying over the town, eight kilometres (five miles) from the Turkish border.
Mounting international condemnation of President Bashar Assad`s regime and high-level diplomacy have failed to ease the year-old Syria conflict, which the UN says has killed more than 8,000 people.
Activists reported dozens killed on Thursday as Syrian troops shelled and raided opposition areas.