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Syria

Syrian death toll reaches 100,000

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has said that 100, 000 people have been killed in Syria since the conflict began in 2011. This comes as regional leaders are warning of a worsening situation.

The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which is based in London and is opposed to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, has said on Wednesday that more than 100, 000 people had been killed in the civil war, since fighting started in March 2011.

This figure, the NGO said, included 18,000 rebel fighters and about 40,000 soldiers and pro-Assad militiamen.

The Observatory said that the number included over 36,000 civilians, 3,000 of them women and more than 5,000 children under the age of 16.

The group relies on a network of activists, doctors and lawyers on the ground throughout Syria for their information.

In the Syrian capital Damascus the army has been pressing a major assault to crush rebels around the capital, the monitoring group and activists said.

In the contested city of Aleppo in the country's north, rebels attempted to advance into western regime-held districts, sparking clashes with government forces.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia urged global action, telling visiting US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday that the civil war had turned into "genocide" as fierce fighting raged in the capital.

Saudi Arabia and Jordan have been warning of the regional fallout of the ongoing crisis, urging the West to realize that the civil war had turned into "genocide."

Meanwhile the United States' ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, on Tuesday slammed the Security Council's failure to act over the worsening Syria conflict as a "moral and strategic disgrace."

"The council's inaction on Syria is a moral and strategic disgrace that history will judge harshly," Rice told reporters following her last appearance after four and a half years as US ambassador.

Russia and China, which accuse the United States, France and Britain of only seeking regime change in Syria, have repeatedly used their vetoes as permanent members of the Security Council to block resolutions that would have increased pressure on President al-Assad.

rg/hc (Reuters, AFP)

DW.DE