A street is blocked with burning tyres during an anti-regime demonstration in Damascus
A handout image released by the Syrian opposition's Shaam News Network , allegedly shows a street blocked with burning tyres during an anti-regime demonstration in Damascus on May 31. AFP cannot independently verify this image. At least 19 people have died after Syrian troops clashed with rebels in several regions of the country, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. © - AFP/Shaam News/File
A street is blocked with burning tyres during an anti-regime demonstration in Damascus
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AFP
Last updated: June 2, 2012

At least 19 killed in fresh Syria clashes

Syrian troops conducted raids in search of anti-regime militants and clashed with rebels on Saturday in several regions of the country, with at least 19 people killed, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

In central Homs province, one civilian was killed during raids of the town of Karatin, and a man and his daughter were fatally shot on a bus on the road to Talbisseh.

Homs city was bombarded by shelling by regime forces for several hours overnight, leaving one rebel dead, according to the Britain-based watchdog.

In central Hama city, the army launched raids "in search of militants," activist Mariam al-Hamwiyahe told AFP.

Further north, in the coastal region of Latakia, the army attacked Kurdish communities, bombing from helicopters an area known as Kurdish Mountains. Injuries were reported but no deaths.

In southern Daraa province, the sounds of explosions and gunfire were heard in the town of Hit, which was stormed by regime forces. Houses were reportedly set on fire and heavy military vehicles were parked on the periphery of the village.

Raids in search of militants were reported in elsewhere in Daraa, known as Syria's cradle of dissent. In the town of Al-Gharia Al-Gharbiya, six soldiers were killed in fighting with rebels.

In Damascus province, one civilian was killed and five others were injured in Kafar Batna, the target of gunfire and explosions. And in the town of Douma outside Damascus, heavy gunfire was reported.

"Many cities and towns are on strike to protest against the massacre of Houla", which left 108 dead last week, including 49 children," the Observatory said.

Shelling was also reported in the Houla region on Saturday.

Near the capital, at least eight soldiers were killed at dawn during fighting with rebels of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) in the area of Al-Ghouta Al-Sharqiyah.

And in the northwestern province of Idlib, the town of Ariha was bombarded by heavy machinegun fire, causing injuries.

World leaders warned on Friday that Syria may be degenerating into a civil war but failed to agree on how to stop the endless spiral of violence that has left at least 13,400 dead since March 2011, according the Observatory.

On Friday, 54 people, including 17 soldiers, were killed, the monitor said.

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