6 Feb 2012

New bombardment of Homs by Syrian forces

9:53 pm on 6 February 2012

Syria's largest opposition group, the Syrian National Council, says the latest bombardment of the city of Homs by presidential forces has killed at least 50 people.

Reuter's news agency quotes a senior member of the council, Catherine al-Talli, as saying the tally provided by activists around the city since the bombardment started at 6am stands at 50, with most of the casualties civilians.

In a broadcast from a BBC correspondent smuggled into the city, shelling and explosions can be heard and he reports that, at times, mortar shells were falling every 30 seconds.

The bombardment came a day after the United States promised harsher sanctions against Damascus.

It was responding to Russian and Chinese vetoes of a draft United Nations resolution that would have backed an Arab plan urging the president, Bashar al-Assad, to step aside.