Fighting continues in Syrian city of Aleppo and capital, Damascus

Aleppo
BEIRUT –- Shelling and clashes continued in the cities of Aleppo and Damascus and other parts of Syria on Saturday as Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton met with Turkish leaders to discuss the worsening situation in the country.

Clinton also met with Syrian opposition activists and pledged $5 million in aid to the U.N. refugee agency as thousands more Syrians have fled across the border into neighboring countries escaping the growing violence between Free Syrian Army rebels and President Bashar Assad’s regime forces.

Clashes were reported between Syrian and Jordanian forces overnight along the two countries' border, but it wasn’t clear if anyone was killed or injured. Activists near the border said it began when Syrian troops fired on refugees trying to flee into Jordan.

The crossing from Syria’s southern Dara province is one of the most dangerous for refugees, and it has become common for Syrian soldiers to fire upon them.

It is also not the first time that the Syrian conflict has spilled over into neighboring countries, further stoking fears that the unrest can destabilize the region.  

In a suburb of Damascus, gunmen abducted three Syrian journalists and a driver who work for a pro-government TV station, the general manager of Al Ikhbariya station told the Associated Press. The station blamed "terrorists" -– the term used to describe the opposition fighters -- for the kidnappings and said it was working on their release.

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--Times staff

Photo: A Syrian youth walks past the ruins of a building destroyed by an airstrike in the village of Tal Rifaat north of Aleppo on Saturday. Credit: Phil Moore/AFP/Getty Images

 
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