Last updated: 27 March, 2013

Warplanes strike rebel posts in Damascus, says NGO

Syrian warplanes launched two strikes on Qaboon in northeastern Damascus on Wednesday, as rebel fighters seized three army posts near the ceasefire line with Israel, a watchdog said.

“Two air strikes were carried out on rebel-held buildings in Qaboon,” said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, adding that violence in Damascus has risen after insurgents seized control of Jobar district in the city’s east.

“There is now fighting in Tadamun, Assali, Yarmuk, Qadam and Qaboon districts,” Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP of outlying neighbourhoods of the capital that have previously seen intermittent violence.

Elsewhere, rebels seized three small army positions in Quneitra province in southern Syria near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, said the watchdog.

In Homs, in central Syria, the army pressed its campaign against rebel enclaves, pounding the district of Khaldiyeh in the heart of the city, the Observatory added.

The United Nations says more than 70,000 people have been killed in Syria’s conflict, which erupted in 2011 after an anti-regime revolt turned into an insurgency when the army unleashed a brutal crackdown against dissent.

On Wednesday alone, at least 73 people were killed in violence across Syria, according to a preliminary toll released by the Observatory. Among the casualties were 20 civilians, 19 soldiers and 33 rebels.