On Sunday, Russia backed Alawites troops stepped up their attacks on liberated areas across the country.
Assad's forces shelled the districts of al-Shaar and Hananu in the east of the city of Aleppo, while clashes were reported in the northern city's Salaheddin neighborhood.
Syrian civilians desperate to check on their homes pushed into fluid front lines around Salaheddine, even as Alawite sniper fire cracked out and freedom fighters warned them to stay away.
In the Damascus Suburbs province, machine gun fire was heard on Sunday in the town of al-Tel, where 15 civilians were killed in Asssad's shelling and clashes a day earlier as Alawites tried to regain control from freedom fighters.
Among those killed in Assad's regime shelling in al-Tel is Yusuf al-Bushi, a Syrian army defector and a citizen journalist who worked with several international news organizations. Journalists have suffered a number of casualties in the 17-month-old uprising against Assad.
Elsewhere, Assad's forces pursued a massive-scale incursion into the liberated district of al-Shamas in the central city of Homs on Saturday. Assad gangs had carried out summary executions of peaceful Muslims in Shamas.
Liberated neighborhoods in Homs have been under siege for more than two months, as shelling by Alawite forces continues, while clashes with freedom fighters at the edges rage.