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Syria: Airstrikes mark the end of a supposed 'ceasefire' (+video)

The ceasefire that was meant to accompany the Eid holiday in Syria was widely ignored. Though the UN had sent aid, it was unable to deliver it because of fighting. 

By Khaled Yacoub OweisReuters / October 30, 2012

In this photo, a rebel sniper aims at Syrian army positions in the Aleppo Jedida district, Syria.

AP Photo/Narciso Contreras

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AMMAN

Syrian warplanes bombed rebel targets with renewed intensity on Tuesday after the end of a widely ignored four-day truce between President Bashar al-Assad's forces and insurgents.

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Ten people in Damascus are killed by a car bomb as reports of fresh shelling hit the capital on the last day of the failed ceasefire over the Eid al-Adha holiday.

State television said "terrorists" had assassinated an air force general, Abdullah Mahmoud al-Khalidi, in a Damascus suburb, the latest of several rebel attacks on senior officials.

In July, a bomb killed four of Assad's aides, including his brother-in-law Assef Shawkat and the defence minister.

Air strikes hit eastern suburbs of Damascus, outlying areas in the central city of Homs, and the northern rebel-held town of Maarat al-Numan on the Damascus-Aleppo highway, activists said.

Rebels have been attacking army bases in al-Hamdaniya and Wadi al-Deif, on the outskirts of Maarat al-Numan.

Some activists said 28 civilians had been killed in Maarat al-Numan and released video footage of men retrieving a toddler's body from a flattened building. The men cursed Assad as they dragged the dead girl, wearing a colourful overall, from the debris. The footage could not be independently verified.

The military has shelled and bombed Maarat al-Numan, 300 km (190 miles) north of Damascus, since rebels took it last month.

"The rebels have evacuated their positions inside Maarat al-Numaan since the air raids began. They are mostly on the frontline south of the town," activist Mohammed Kanaan said.

Maarat al-Numan and other Sunni towns in northwestern Idlib province are mostly hostile to Assad's ruling system, dominated by his minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam.

Two rebels were killed and 10 wounded in an air strike on al-Mubarkiyeh, 6 km (4 miles) south of Homs, where rebels have besieged a compound guarding a tank maintenance facility.

Opposition sources said the facility had been used to shell Sunni villages near the Lebanese border.

'We'll fix it'

The army also fired mortar bombs into the Damascus district of Hammouria, killing at least eight people, activists said.

One video showed a young girl in Hammouria with a large shrapnel wound in her forehead sitting dazed while a doctor said: "Don't worry dear, we'll fix it for you."

Syria's military, stretched thin by the struggle to keep control, has increasingly used air power against opposition areas, including those in the main cities of Damascus and Aleppo. Insurgents lack effective anti-aircraft weapons.

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