Syria death toll from rebel infighting jumps to 68

In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Flames rise from damaged cars at the site where two car bombs exploded at a commercial street inhabited mostly by members of President Bashar Assad's minority Alawite sect, in Homs province, central Syria, Wednesday April 9, 2014. Two car bombs exploded Wednesday in a government-held district of Syria's battleground city of Homs, killing at least 25 people and wounding more than 100, state media said. (AP Photo/SANA)

BEIRUT (AP) — Activists say the death toll from infighting between rival Islamic rebel groups in eastern Syria has jumped to 68.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says battles are still raging on Friday, for a second day, around Bukamal town in the oil-rich Deir el-Zour province near the Iraqi border.

Rebels from the al-Qaida breakaway group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and fighters of the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front and other Islamic groups have been fighting each other in the province for weeks over territory they previously captured together from President Bashar Assad's forces, including oil-fields.

The Observatory said 51 fighters died in fighting around Bukamal on Thursday, when the flare-up started. The Islamic State captured the town, previously controlled by the Nusra Front.