BEIRUT - Overnight clashes between security forces and army defectors in northern Syria left 12 soldiers and defectors and three civilians dead early on Saturday, activists said.
Fighting has become more intense as rebels increasingly often confront security forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad who are trying to suppress the eight-month-old protest movement against his rule.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said fighting broke out around midnight in the northern city of Idlib, near the Turkish border.
"Seven were killed from the army and regime security forces, including an army officer," the group said. "Three civilians and five defectors were also killed."
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