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BBC Says It Has Found Evidence Of A Massacre In Syria; At Least 100 People Killed & Burned In Their
January 18, 2013
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Syria's official news agency released this photo after a rocket attack in the city of Aleppo, killing 12 people

As horrific as the war in Syria is, it's important to shine a light on the apparent atrocities unfolding there.

Today, the BBC said it has found evidence of a massacre that was reported this week by opposition and human rights activists.

At least 100 people were said to have been killed and burned in their homes, by forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, based in the U.K., said women and children were among the dead.

It reportedly happened in the village of Haswiya, on the edge of Homs - a city in central Syria.

Today, a BBC correspondent got into the village.

When she arrived Syria forces blamed the deaths on hundreds of men from an Islamist militant rebel group. But villagers told the BBC that the Syrian army was there at the time.

The soldiers also said that all the bodies had been taken away. However, the BBC correspondent reported the following:

"Three charred bodies lay sprawled just inside one house. A trail of blood stained the cement. In the kitchen, where china teacups sat neatly on a shelf, more than a dozen bullet casings were scattered across a floor smeared with blood.

"In another room, two more burnt corpses were curled up next to a broken bed."

A government official in the capital Damascus denied there was any massacre.

But the SOHR said some of the dead were "burnt inside their homes while others were killed with knives" and other weapons.

It said there were also reports that "whole families were executed" and it called on the United Nations to investigate.

The SOHR said all of the dead appeared to be Sunni Muslims, who are the majority in Syria and are leading the fight to overthrow the Assad regime.

After nearly two years of war, the UN says more than 60,000 people have been killed.

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