Smoke rises and sounds believed to be gunfire echo in the Syrian city of Homs in this raw video shot by the Associated Press on Monday. The city has been the main target as the government of President Bashar Assad continues its crackdown on opposition protesters. Almost 6,000 lives have been lost since the rebellion began last March, according to U.N. estimates.
The Assad government has attributed the violence in Homs to "armed terrorist attacks," while the opposition says the military is responsible for attacking the central Syrian city, including bombarding a makeshift clinic. Amateur videos have shown gruesome images of bloodied children, purportedly killed in government attacks.
The conflicting accounts cannot be independently verified because the Syrian government has restricted direct media coverage of the violence. After Russia and China vetoed a U.N. Security Council measure on Saturday calling for Assad to step aside., U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton warned that Syria could descend into a "brutal civil war."
-- Emily Alpert in Los Angeles