AMMAN - Syrian forces backed by tanks killed at least 20 civilians in the city of Homs on Wednesday in one of the fiercest military assaults on urban centers to crush six months of pro-democracy protests, activists and residents said.
Residents said the assault concentrated on old districts that have seen daily street demonstrations demanding the removal of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
It came as the Arab League said that its secretary general will visit Syria on Saturday and Arab foreign ministers will meet next week to convey concerns over the crackdown.
"Military helicopters are flying overhead and snipers are shooting from rooftops at anything. Tank machine gun fire is coming at us like rain," a resident of the Bab Sbaaa district who did not want to be further identified told Reuters by satellite phone.