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Activists: Syrian troops continue offensives

BEIRUT — Activists say Syrian troops are assaulting and shelling restive regions in the north and center of the country despite an international cease-fire scheduled to go into effect within days.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says dozens of army vehicles are taking part in an attack east of the northwestern town of Jisr al-Shughour. It said explosions were heard in the area Sunday morning.

Tarek Badrakhan, who is an activist in the central city of Homs, said troops fired mortar rounds Sunday at the rebel-held neighborhood of Khaldiyeh.

Syrian President Bashar Assad last week accepted a cease-fire agreement brokered by international envoy Kofi Annan calling for government forces to withdraw from towns and villages by Tuesday.