Iranian Pilgrims Kidnapped in Damascus

Gunmen seize a tour bus of Iranian pilgrims as fighting flares up in the Syrian capital


Renewed battles between government forces and rebel fighters rocked Damascus on Saturday, and clashes were reported in at least half a dozen other cities across the country.

The Syrian army hammered an area of the capital with artillery, mortar fire and helicopter rockets as rebels and soldiers battled near the presidential palace. Heavy fighting also continued unabated in the northern city of Aleppo, the country's largest, which has become the scene of a raging urban war after remaining relatively quiet for much of Syria's nearly 17-month-old uprising.