DAMASCUS, June 28 (Xinhua) -- Armed groups assassinated a university professor and five of her family members on the outskirts of the central city of Homs Thursday, state-run SANA news agency reported.
Ahlam Imad, professor at the Faculty of Engineering and Petrochemical, was killed when armed groups stormed her house and shot her down along with her family members, including three children.
The government forces clashed with the armed men after the murder, killing 10 of them, SANA said.
Two of the killed militants are not Syrians, it said.
The situation in Homs, a stronghold of armed insurgency, has dramatically deteriorated. In some cases crimes in the province bore the hallmarks of sectarian rivalries.
Earlier Thursday, an official of the Syrian Red Crescent hinted that his group and representatives of the International Red Cross have been blocked by armed opposition from entering restive areas of Homs to evacuate and render help to people.
The oppositional activist network, Local Coordination Committees, said 66 people were killed Thursday, 17 of whom in Homs.
The group always blames the government for being behind the alleged daily deadly incidents. Its account, however, could not be independently verified.