Aleppo Battle Rages as Both Sides Report Atrocitiesإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
The Syrian army pressed its assault on rebels in commercial capital Aleppo on Sunday, while both sides reported atrocities and Arab foreign ministers postponed a planned meeting on the 17-month conflict.
The exiled opposition said that pro-government militia had summarily executed 10 civilians in a round-up in the flashpoint central city of Homs, while the official SANA news agency reported the murder of one of its staff, the latest in a series pro-government journalists to be killed.
The Arab League gave no reason for the indefinite postponement of its planned meeting in Saudi Arabia which had been due to discuss a replacement for international envoy Kofi Annan who announced his resignation earlier this month.
In Aleppo, troops shelled rebel-held districts as fighting flared anew around a southwestern neighborhood that rebel fighters had quit last week, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said
The Shaar, Tariq al-Bab, Sakhur, Hanano and Bustan al-Qasr neighborhoods all came under bombardment, as the army pressed a ground offensive it launched on Wednesday to recapture areas seized by rebels since July 20, the Britain-based watchdog said.
In the capital Damascus, gunfire was reported in the Qadam neighborhood.
Outside the capital, machinegun fire was heard in the town of Al-Tal, where 15 civilians were killed in shelling and clashes on Saturday.
They were among 148 people killed across Syria on Saturday -- 85 civilians, 20 rebels and 43 soldiers, the Observatory said.
The pro-government Al-Watan newspaper spoke of "foiled bids to break the calm in Damascus, which was cleansed of terrorist groups who terrified residents."
In Aleppo, the paper said that the army was poised to assault the Sukari neighborhood in the south of the city, after its recapture of the nearby Salaheddin district on Thursday.
"The door to Sukari district, the second bastion of the armed men in Aleppo, is now open for the army," it said, adding that troops had "gained control of several axes, which would allow them to storm the area."
The opposition Syrian National Council and activist groups said that the 10 civilians were executed a round-up of military-aged men in the Shamas district of Homs.
"Militiamen detained nearly 350 people from the Shamas district, assembled them in a courtyard and executed 10 of them," activist group, the Syrian Revolution General Council, said.
"The fate of the nearly 340 others is unknown and we fear greatly that they have met the same fate as the 10 martyrs," the group added.
The opposition SNC issued a similar statement.
"Ten young men were executed in the Shamas neighborhood of Homs city after the army and pro-regime gunmen stormed the area and rounded up 350 young people," it said.
The official SANA news agency said that the head of its home news department, Abbas Ali, was assassinated by an "armed terrorist group" at his home in Jdaidet Artuz outside the capital on Saturday evening.