BEIRUT, Lebanon - Two booby-trapped vehicles exploded within hours of each other Friday in Syria's once-impregnable capital of Damascus, killing at least five police officers as rebels increasingly target President Bashar al-Assad's seat of power.
With the civil war intensifying, the head of the Red Cross warned after meeting with Assad that the situation in the country was "rapidly deteriorating." Elsewhere in Damascus, shells struck a Palestinian refugee camp, killing 10 people, state media said.
The uprising began in March 2011, when protests calling for political change were met by a violent government crackdown by government troops. Many in the opposition took up arms, and activists say more than 23,000 people have been killed. The government says more than 4,000 security officers are among the dead.