Troops shell Damascus as fighting intensifies
DAMASCUSSyrian troops shelled the Damascus neighborhoods of Qaboon and Barzeh as fighting raged with rebels in other parts of the capital, rebels said. “Qaboon is surrounded by tanks, and regime forces are shelling the quarter from all sides,” the anti-regime Union of Coordinators of the Syrian Revolution said on its Facebook page.
Both neighborhoods were also being pounded by helicopter gunships, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the Local Coordination Committees. All access roads into Qaboon were reported to have been blocked by troops and security agents. With President Bashar al-Assad’s regime reeling from a bomb attack that killed three top commanders, the United States turned the screw further with sanctions against dozens of government ministers.
The Treasury Department announced measures against 29 members of the regime, including the ministers of finance, economy, justice, information, agriculture, housing, health, education, environment, culture and oil.