Syrian activists and opposition groups said 26 children and 21 women were “massacred” Monday by pro-government gunmen in the besieged city of Homs. State media confirmed the deaths of at least 12 people, but instead blamed “armed terrorists”—a term Bashar al-Assad’s regime has used to describe the opposition. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also confirmed a dozen deaths, while the Local Coordination Committees said 45 people were killed—both claimed the attacks were carried out by shabiha gunmen who have been involved in the yearlong crackdown against an opposition uprising. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be among ministers from 15 countries holding talks in a United Nations Security Council meeting, and Syria is expected to dominate the agenda.
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