The Syrian opposition says at least six Syrian Army soldiers have been killed in clashes with deserters in the restive province of Homs.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said fierce fighting erupted between regular army units and the defectors near the town of Al-Qusair in Homs.
The London-based human rights group reported heavy shelling by government forces.
It is hard to independently verify news from Syria, as authorities have barred most foreign media from the country since the eruption of pro-democracy protests in mid-March.
The United Nations says more than 5,000 people have been killed in the unrest.
compiled from agency reports