Middle East

Nine killed as Syrian troops pound rebel areas

Residents of the Syrian village of Treimsa gather around the vehicles of UN observers upon their arrival to investigate an attack on the village, where more than 150 people were killed this week, in the central province of Hama on July 13, 2012. AFP PHOTO/D. LEAL OLIVAS

NEAR ALEPPO: Syrian troops bombarded several areas in Deir Ezzor, Hama and Homs, killing at least nine people on Sunday, a watchdog said, as an AFP correspondent reported shelling near Aleppo.

Four civilians were killed in the Deir Ezzor neighbourhood of Hamidiyeh as troops shelled parts of the eastern oil city, while one rebel was killed in fighting with soldiers there, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

In the central province of Homs, regime forces again bombed the rebel stronghold of Rastan as they attempted to gain control of the town which has been under the control of rebels since February.

Several areas of Homs city also were bombed, killing two civilians, the watchdog said.

In the central province of Hama, two civilians were killed and others wounded in bombing of Al-Qalet Madiq. In the same region, the military also stormed the villages of Jreires and Maarzaf, using heavy weapons.

An AFP reporter said there was also steady bombardment for nearly six hours about 30 kilometres (around 18 miles) west of the northern commercial city of Aleppo, but details of any casualties were still unavailable.

The correspondent said every two or three minutes there were bombings between 1500 GMT to about 2100 GMT Saturday, after which they occurred at a rate of about one every 15 minutes.

On Saturday at least 115 people were killed across Syria, the Observatory said.





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