DAMASCUS, March 10 (Xinhua) -- One child was killed and nine others wounded on Sunday when a bomb shell slammed their mini school bus in a restive suburb of the Syrian capital Damascus, the state-run SANA news agency said.
The bus was struck at the Dahiet al-Assad area in the restive suburb of Harasta, SANA said, adding that many other mortars landed at the area.
Mortar attacks have become increasingly common in Damascus, as the intensity of clashes is on the rise between the government troops and the armed rebels. And clashes and violence have flared up in hotspots nationwide.
Earlier in the day, multiple mortar shells landed at Souk al- Hal in al-Zablatani area in Damascus, wounding five people and causing material damages in the area, SANA said.
Meanwhile, the electricity in the country's northern city of Hasaka has been totally cut off due to the clashes that have rocked the adjacent city of al-Raqqa, which has been recently overrun by the armed rebels.
The long-standing conflict has started to have repercussions on the country's infrastructure.
The government-run Tishrin newspaper reported Sunday that the main refinery of the central province of Homs was hit on Saturday noon by three mortars launched by rebels, adding that the " terrorist" attack triggered off a big fire.
It said that the fire was put off after 90 minutes, adding that the attack was the fourth over the past months.
Quoting Homs' governor, Ahmad Monuir Mohammad, the newspaper said the mortars were likely Israeli-made.
In the meantime, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Sunday that a big explosion rocked the al-Rmeila neighborhood in al-Raqqa city a day earlier, leaving at least seven civilians dead.
Posting a video of the blast's aftermath, the Observatory said that the dead include women and children.
Also in al-Raqqa, clashes between al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front and government troops flared at the 17th Regiment to the city's north, the Observatory said, reporting casualties on both sides.
Clashes were also reported to have intensified in other areas like Aleppo, Hama, Homs and Damascus countryside.
The Observatory said that 14 members of one family were found killed in the Mlaiha suburb of Damascus, adding that the killed include seven women and three children.
Violence has intensified in Syria recently in what some observers described as the escalation before pacification that is expected after the international community declared support to the political solution to Syria's long-standing conflict.
A recent UN tally placed the overall death toll of Syria's 23- month conflict at more than 70,000 people.
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