BEIRUT/AMMAN - Syrian army mortar and artillery bombardment of an area of southern Damascus where Palestinian refugees live killed at least 20 people on Thursday, residents and local emergency workers said.

Yarmouk camp and the districts surrounding it have seen the most prolonged fighting in the capital since forces loyal to President Bashar Assad launched a counter-offensive to push rebels out of the city two months ago.

Residents in the camp said that for the last two weeks Yarmouk had been closed off from neighboring districts and that they had heard regular clashes. Since early on Thursday they reported heavy bombardment in the area.

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