Syrian Tanks Surround Homs

Plus: Blasts kill 25 in Aleppo
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 10, 2012 3:59 AM CST
Updated Feb 10, 2012 4:34 AM CST
Syrian Tanks Surround Homs
A Syrian rebel peers through the scope on his weapon in Idlib, Syria, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012. Syrian forces fired mortars and rockets that killed scores of people Thursday in the rebellious city of Homs, activists said, the latest strike in a weeklong assault as President Bashar Assad's regime tries...   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – Time is running out for Syrian civilians as tanks surround Homs and the UN continues to fiddle for answers. Food, water, and medicine are running out, and sealed roads are preventing the evacuation of children and the wounded, witnesses tell the Guardian. "Communications have been completely cut off," said one resident. "The army has blocked access to the city. Some people tried to escape but they found all the roads closed. There is no food left. All the water tanks have been targeted. If you go to the shops, the snipers up on the roofs will shoot you. The children will die here. All the people want is to escape."

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The UN and the Arab League are discussing sending a joint observer mission to Syria, and talks are continuing over forming an ad hoc "friends of the Syrian people" group to put pressure on the Assad regime. But there has been no concrete action since Russia and China vetoed a UN resolution that President Bashar al-Assad step aside. The resident explained that the security council veto has given the regime a green light to wipe out Homs. "The whole world is against us. Nobody is helping us," he said. "There is nothing left but to pray." Meanwhile, in the northern city of Aleppo today, two explosions targeting security compounds killed 25 people and wounded another 175, the AP reports, citing state media. Aleppo, Syria's largest city, has largely stood by the president during the uprising. State TV blames "terrorists," but the opposition blames Assad's regime. (Read more Homs stories.)

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