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Syrian Rebels Attack Government Positions In Northwest

Syrian activists and rebel groups say opposition fighters have launched new offensives against government forces in the country's northwest.

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the rebels launched an assault in Latakia Province, while other fighters attacked government positions in the neighboring province of Hama.

Several rebel groups earlier announced they were launching a new "battle" against government forces in response to "violations" of a cease-fire agreement.

The groups, which included factions fighting under the banner of the Free Syrian Army and Islamist Ahrar al-Sham, said they were setting up a "joint operations room."

A partial cessation of hostilities has been in place in Syria since the end of February but there has been escalating fighting, particularly around the city of Aleppo.

The truce excluded the Islamic State group and the Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Nusra Front.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters