Syrian military officials say scores of security forces have been killed in clashes with armed groups across the country.
Source: Press TV
At least 120 Syrian forces have been killed after armed groups attacked security forces in northwestern town of Jisr al-Shughour, state TV reported.
According to the state TV, 82 of them were killed after armed groups attacked city's security center on Monday. Some 28 police and security forces personnel were targeted "on their way to rescue citizens being terrorized" by armed gangs.
Others died in clashes throughout the town.
"The armed groups are committing a veritable massacre. They have mutilated bodies and thrown others into the Assi river," the broadcaster said adding that more than 200 policemen and security forces were also wounded during the clashes.
State TV said hundreds of armed gunmen had taken over parts of Jisr al-Shughour and torched several government buildings.
"The security forces have managed to end a blockade over one of the neighbourhoods (in Jisr al-Shughour) that was seized by the gunmen for a while and are now battling them to end the blockade on the other neighbourhoods," it said.
The TV also said that the city's residents are fleeing their homes, seeking safety at police and security stations, adding that Jisr al-Shughour residents have urged the army to intervene rapidly to end the violence.
Syrian officials say the armed groups are hiding in houses and firing at soldiers and civilians alike, using residents as human shields.
Since the beginning of unrest in Syria in mid-March, hundreds of people, including security forces, have been killed.
The opposition accuses security forces of being behind the killings. But, the government blames armed gangs for the deadly violence, stressing that the unrest is being orchestrated from abroad.
Damascus has announced the arrest of several members of armed terrorist groups, saying that they have confessed to receiving weapons and money from foreign organizations to kill civilians and security forces in a bid to cause chaos in the country.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has vowed to bring those behind the killings to justice.