61 killed in Syria as truce collapses in several areas: NGO

61 killed in Syria as truce collapses in several areas: NGO
Beirut: 

At least 61 people were killed on Friday in Syria on the first day of a truce to mark the Eid al-Adha Muslim holiday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported.

The Britain-based watchdog which said the truce collapsed in several regions gave an early evening death toll of 61 dead -- 21 civilians, 27 soldiers and 13 rebels.

Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman reported casualties from fighting and car bombings in various parts of Syria, including in and around Damascus, in the second city Aleppo, in the central city of Homs and near the Wadi Deif military base in the northwest province of Idlib.

Ten soldiers and four rebels were killed at Wadi Deif, where fierce clashes have raged since insurgents overran the nearby strategic town of Maaret al-Numan on October 9, cutting off a key army supply route along the Aleppo-Damascus highway.

Fighters from the jihadist Al-Nusra Front, which categorically rejected any truce, have been participating in the fighting at Wadi Daif, according to the Observatory. Three soldiers were killed and eight were wounded in a car bomb attack in the southern city of Daraa, according to the watchdog, while Syrian state television said a car bombing in Damascus killed five people and wounded 32.

No casualties were reported from a third car bomb explosion in the southern Damascus district of Tadamun, where a car bombing had killed six people two days before.

Al-Nosra Front has claimed the majority of deadly car bombings and suicide attacks over the course of the conflict.

The Syrian government and main rebel Free Syrian Army had agreed to observe the truce brokered by UN-Arab League peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, but both sides had pledged to respond if attacked.

Story First Published: October 27, 2012 00:15 IST

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