Dec. 22 - Videos purport to show a government crackdown continuing in Homs on the same day an Arab League team arrives to monitor an agreement to end the bloodshed. Katharine Jackson reports.
A tank rumbles by as gunshots sound. Smoke rises from a building. A voice says Syrian forces are attacking the neighborhood. Obtained from a social media web site, the videos - which cannot be independently verified by Reuters - purport to show Syrian forces waging an offensive in Homs, where activists report the deadliest assault in a nine-month-old government crackdown on protests against President Bashar al-Assad's rule. The videos surfaced on Thursday - the same day the Arab League says an advance team arrived to begin assessing whether Damascus is acting to end the bloodshed. Events in Syria are hard to verify because authorities have banned most independent reporting. Syria says they are battling terrorists who have killed more than 2,000 soldiers and police. Last week The United Nations said more than 5,000 people had been killed in the crackdown. Activists say hundreds more have died in an escalating death toll that has raised the specter of civil war. Katharine Jackson, Reuters.