BEIRUT - Syria denied on Monday that it had used cluster bombs in its battle with rebels trying to overthrow President Bashar Assad, saying it did not possess such weapons.

A brief military statement carried by state television came in response to a report by Human Rights Watch which said on Sunday that government forces had dropped Russian-made cluster bombs over civilian areas.

"The Syrian Arab Army does not possess these kinds of weapons and affirms that these reports (of their use) are completely untrue," the army statement said.

Cluster bombs explode in the air, scattering dozens of smaller bomblets over an area the size of a sports field. Most nations have banned their use under a convention which became international law in 2010, but which Syria has not signed.

A video clip which activists said was filmed in the town of Al-Bab, north east of Aleppo, also showed cluster submunitions scattered on the floor of what they said was a civilian house.


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