US-backed rebels in Syria say they have captured Iranian nationals and are holding them. The Iranian government says they are pilgrims in Syria for religious purposes. , a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
29 Syrian students, a teacher killed in militant attack on school
Tue Dec 4, 2012 2:22PM GMT
Militants fighting against the government have attacked a school near the capital, Damascus, killing at least 29 students and their teacher, SANA reports.
The fatalities occurred on Tuesday after a mortar launched by militants hit Bteiha School in the Wafideen camp, located some 20 kilometers northeast of Damascus.
Three Syrian civilians were also killed and many others injured in terrorist mortar attacks in the western city of Homs.
According to Syria's official news agency SANA, government forces responded to the attacks and killed tens of militants in the region. Four Syrian troops were also killed in the clashes.
There are also reports of clashes between the Syrian army and foreign-backed militants in the Homs suburb of Quseir, scores of militants are reported to be killed in the region.
Government forces have also seized a car loaded with weapons and ammunitions on Homs-Damascus highway.
Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011. Many people, including large numbers of army and security personnel, have been killed in the turmoil.
The Syrian government says the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country, and there are reports that a very large number of the militants operating in the country are foreign nationals.
Last week, Syrian newspaper Al Watan published the name of 142 foreign militants from 18 countries, who were killed while fighting against the government. Almost 50 of those named were Saudi nationals.
According to the paper, they were mostly extremists belonging to al-Qaeda or jointed the terrorist organization after arriving in Syria and that they entered the country via Turkey and Lebanon.