13 people killed in clashes in Syria's Homs

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Around 13 people were killed within the last 24 hours in clashes with security forces in the central province of Homs, a human rights activist said on Tuesday.

Abdul-Karim al-Rihawi, head of the Syrian League for Human Rights, told Xinhua by phone that six civilians were killed Monday and other seven on Tuesday in clashes with security forces, adding there is an osculation in security operations in the city.

Meanwhile, Al-Watan newspaper said the recent violent acts which Homs has passed through were an "imported sectarian grudge instigated by foreign parties," adding the army redeployed in many areas to put an end to "violent acts among residents that have erupted when terrorist groups kidnapped three young men and mutilated their bodies."

Activists said a wave of sectarian bloodshed followed the kidnapping, leaving up to 30 people killed over the weekend in Homs, a dangerous escalation in violence stemming from the country 's four-month-old protests.

The governor of Homs, Ghassan Abdul-Al, was quoted by al-Watan as saying that recent clashes in Homs left 11 people killed.

The Syrian government said 1,200 members of security forces and army personnel had died since the eruption of protests. According to activists, more than 1,600 civilians have died and some 10,000 have been detained.

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