Syria violence kills at least 23: NGO
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Last Updated: Thursday, March 29, 2012, 23:45
Beirut: Clashes across Syria on Thursday killed at least 23 people, including 14 civilians, as Arab leaders gathered for a summit in Baghdad in a renewed push to end the year-long bloodshed.

Five civilians, including a woman and a child, died as regime forces stormed villages near the town of Maaret al-Numan, in northwestern Idlib province, which has been under a relentless army assault since the start of the month, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. Three soldiers also died.

Six other civilians as well as two regime forces and an armed rebel died in fighting in central Homs province. Three people died in nearby Hama province along with two soldiers who were killed when their vehicle came under attack by armed rebels, the Britain-based group added.

It said that an army colonel was assassinated by armed men in the northern city of Aleppo, where an officer was also killed on Wednesday.

The state news agency SANA said the two officers were killed by an "armed terrorist group" today as they were heading to work.

"Four terrorists in a car killed officers Abdel Karim Raie and Fouad Shaaban as they were heading to work," the agency said.

Clashes were also taking place near the town of Zabadani, in Damascus province.

A loud blast was reported in Harasta, also in Damascus province, and plumes of smoke could be seen rising near an army checkpoint, the Observatory said.

In the village of Dael, in southern Daraa province, fierce clashes were reported between regime forces and rebel troops. "Eight soldiers have been wounded and a military armoured vehicle was hit," the Observatory said.


First Published: Thursday, March 29, 2012, 23:45

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