Houses damaged by the government army, according to the opposition, are seen in the Inshaat district of Homs
Houses damaged by the government army, according to the opposition, are seen in the Inshaat district of Homs

Violence continued in Syria despite a UN- backed deadline for the government to withdraw troops and heavy weapons from the cities.

Syria's foreign minister Walid Muallem said the government had taken steps to implement joint UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan's plan to end the bloodshed.

Muallem, on a visit to Moscow, said that troops had started withdrawing in some areas and insisted the government remains committed to Anna's plan. He instead blamed the escalation of violence on "armed terrorist groups."

"I told my Russian colleague of the steps Syria is taking to show its goodwill for the implementation of the Annan plan," Muallem said.

"We have already withdrawn military units from different Syrian provinces," he added.

Syria had officially agreed to implement Annan's six-point plan by April 10 but had warned it wanted armed rebels to put down their weapons.

Under the plan Syrian troops were expected to complete withdrawals from town centres and stop using heavy weaponry. The move was expected to be followed by full cease-fire by April 12.

Armed opposition groups had said they would continue to protect the civilians and refused to give up their weapons.

Turkey-Syria Tensions escalate

Syria's foreign minister also accused Turkey of arming opponents to the regime.

"Turkey... supports illegal Syrian militant groups, supplies them with weapons... and lets them illegally cross into Syria," Muallem said. "How can we (fulfil the plan) if there are still illegal arms deliveries and moving of militants from Turkey?"

Muallem's comments came after fighting between the Syrian forces and armed opposition fighters spilled over into Turkey.

The two groups became engulfed in a gun fight inside Syria near the Kilis refugee camp in Turkey, along the Syrian-Turkey border.

Kilis' province governor said stray bullets hit the refugee camp.

"The injuries are a result of clashes between Syrian soldiers and rebels. The bullets reached the camp," Yusuf Odabas, the governor of the province, told Turkey's state TRT broadcaster.

He said three Syrians were seriously wounded, and a Turkish police officer and a translator were also injured but not seriously.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaking on a trip to China, described the incidents as a "clear violation" of its borders and warn his country would "take the necessary measures" in response

He is now expected to meet with Saudi Arabia's leaders on Friday to further discuss the Syrian crisis.

Violence Continues

Despite Muallem's claims the government has started to implement Anna's plan, opposition groups and activists warned shelling and fighting is still on-going in several cities.

More than 100 people, mostly civilians were killed on Monday alone, activists said.

Meanwhile on Tuesday more shelling was reported in Daraa , Aleppo, Idlib, Mohassan and Homs where 12 people including four women and three children were killed in the neighbourhoods of Khalidiya and Bayada.

Also, in a new report titled 'In Cold Blood' Human Rights Watch said Syrian security forces 'have summarily executed scores, and possibly hundreds, of civilians and opposition fighters during their intensified offensive on cities and towns since December 2011.'