Syria Live Blog
Dozens killed in Syria today; rights groups claims Assad troops used cluster bombs
Reuters give us a wrap of the violence in Syria today, with a statement from Human Rights Watch on the use of cluster bombs by the Syrian government:
On Thursday, Syrian forces shelled the suburbs of the capital, Damascus, to flush the rebels out from areas where they have established a foothold.
Troops pounded Mezzeh and Kafr Souseh in eastern Damascus with mortars, sending residents streaming out, activists said. They also targeted the Liwan, Qadam and Daraya neighborhoods from a nearby military airport.
Explosions could be heard though much of the capital and amateur videos posted online showed huge clouds of smoke rising from the targeted areas. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported three dead in the area, among more than 45 people killed across Syria on Thursday. At least 11 were government soldiers, it said.
Also Thursday, Human Rights Watch said it had found evidence the Syrian government had fired cluster bombs in an area near the central city of Hama. The New York-based group said the munitions are clearly identifiable in amateur videos posted online, and that local activists said the area has been under government bombardment for weeks.
Cluster bombs explode in the air and drop dozens of "bomblets" over a large area, but these often do not explode on impact. They remain explosive, increasing the threat of later injury to civilians.