Activists say Syrian troops have continued shelling residential neighborhoods in the central city of Homs for the fifth straight day, killing scores of people.
Militiamen loyal to President Bashar Assad shot dead at least 20 civilians when they stormed the homes of three unarmed families on the edges of opposition districts in the city of Homs, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
"The shabbiha (Assad's militiamen) broke into three houses overnight and slaughtered a family of five - the father, wife and their three children, a family of seven in another house and a eight in a third," dissident in exile Rami Abdelrahman, who heads the British-based Observatory, told Reuters.
Funeral in Homs (Photo: AP)
Omar Shaker, an activist in Baba Amr, says his neighborhood is under "very intense shelling" by tanks, mortars, artilleries and heavy machine guns. Shaker says he has counted five bodies Wednesday in his district.
The violence comes as President Bashar Assad's regime is increasingly isolated. Five European and six Gulf nations have pulled their ambassadors out of Damascus, and the US has closed its embassy in Syria.
Reuters and AP contributed to this report
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