Warplanes batter Syria's Homs as Turkey returns fire
DAMASCUS (AFP) - Warplanes pounded rebel-held areas of Homs in the Syrian city's heaviest onslaught for months on Friday, monitors said, as Turkey reportedly returned cross-border shellfire for the second time this week.
The clashes came as the United Nations (UN) condemned the Syrian army's deadly shelling of a Turkish border town on Wednesday, and "terrorist" car bombs that killed almost 50 people in the war-torn country's second city Aleppo on the same day.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the bombardment of Khaldiyeh district was the most intense of Homs in five months, and the first time the regime has deployed fighter jets against the city.
Rebels hit back by downing a regime helicopter gunship in Damascus province and seizing an army checkpoint outside the eastern city of Deir Ezzor, killing at least 12 soldiers, said the Observatory.