Syria: Heavy Clashes Reported

By: Rick Gladstone

A Syrian activist group reported that at least 80 soldiers were killed over the weekend in clashes with rebels, which would be one of the largest losses for government forces since the uprising began in March 2011. The report, by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, could not be independently confirmed. The group also told Reuters that rebels had overrun army checkpoints in the northern town of Ariha, and a photo, right, released by activists was said to show damaged army tanks in the town. The reports cast further doubt on the viability of a truce plan arranged by Kofi Annan, an envoy of the United Nations and the Arab League. He plans to brief the United Nations Security Council this week and will also meet with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who has said President Bashar al-Assad of Syria must resign as part of any solution to the conflict.

Source: New York Times

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