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Syria - Apr 15, 2012 - 13:56

Last modified: 15 Apr 2012 10:56
[Still image taken from video footage said to have been uploaded from al-Khalidiya earlier today]

Activists say Syrian government forces heavily shelled residential neighbourhoods dominated by opposition fighters in the central city of Homs, just hours before the arrival in Damascus of an advance team of UN observers. 

A spokesperson for international envoy Kofi Annan said the group of six observers were due to arrive on Sunday night and will be "on the ground in blue helmets tomorrow". 

The reported shelling in Homs on Sunday is threatening the truce to which President Bashar al-Assad and rebels fighting to topple him had agreed. Both sides accuse each other of violating the truce at the centre of Annan's peace plan.
"What ceasefire? There's an explosion every five to six minutes,'' said Yazan, a Homs-based activist, contacted via Skype by the Associated Press news agency.
"I can also hear the sound of a reconnaissance plane. It's flying very low.''

Continue reading our news story 'UN monitors head to Syria as fighting rages' for more detail and context.

For more of Al Jazeera's special coverage visit our spotlight page - Syria: The War Within. 

Meanwhile, activists say Syrian security forces are now shelling the village of Kherbet al-Jouz in Idlib, where there is a heavy presence of the rebel Free Syria Army.

In another amateur video posted on YouTube by activists on Sunday, explosions and gunfire can be heard echoing as al-Khalidiya's skyline is engulfed in grey smoke.

The video below has not been independently verified