BEIRUT: Syrian regime forces resumed shelling parts of Damascus on Monday as security forces carried out arrests of students in housing attached to Damascus University, a monitoring group said.
Warplanes also carried out raids across the country, including in the Baba Amr neighbourhood of central Homs, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The Observatory reported "violent clashes" between rebel forces and regime troops in the eastern Damascus district of Jubar, "accompanied by heavy shelling of the neighbourhood and reported losses on both sides."
The watchdog also reported shelling of the city's southern Maadaniya district and sniper fire and casualties in northern Barzeh.
The Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmuk in the south of the city also came under mortar fire throughout the day, the Britain-based Observatory said.
Syria's state news agency SANA reported that "terrorists" had fired five mortar shells at areas in the capital close the presidential palace, adding that the fire had caused no injuries.
As rebels have pushed towards the capital, they have sporadically fired towards the area of the presidential place in the north-west of the city.
Elsewhere in the capital, the Observatory said, regime forces carried out "a campaign of arrests of a number of students from the University City student housing in the Mazzeh district" of western Damascus.
Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman, speaking to AFP by telephone, said "intelligence forces this morning entered University City," which is home to Damascus University students from different areas.
The group also reported 17 people killed in the area around the capital in shelling on towns including Irbin, Douma and Kfar Batna.
Regime forces have launched a broad campaign in the region around the capital in recent months, in a bid to unseat rebels from rear bases they are using to attack Damascus.
Seven civilians were also killed in air raids on the town of Qusayr in Homs province.
In central Hama province, opposition fighters gained control of the Tel Hamamiyat checkpoint on the eastern outskirts of town of Karnaz, "following violent clashes that began at around midnight on Sunday," the Observatory said.
"A number of military vehicles were damaged, members of the regime forces were killed and weapons and ammunition were captured," it said.
Regime forces responded with artillery fire targeting the local towns of Karnaz and Latamna, and air raids on the town of Kfar Zita.
Regime warplanes also bombed the city of Raqqa, which fell to the rebels earlier this month, the Observatory said.
The group said at least 71 people were killed across the country on Monday, including 36 civilians, 10 rebel fighters and 25 regime troops.