In Syria, mortars kill 15 in Damascus refugee camp

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In this citizen journalism image provided by Shaam News Network SNN, taken on Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2012, smoke leaps the air from purported shelling in Damascus, Syria. Syrian opposition activists say regime forces have swept through neighborhoods south of the capital Damascus in a deadly military operation that has inflicted casualties. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network, SNN)THE ASSOCIATED PRESS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS CITIZEN JOURNALIST IMAGE

BEIRUT (AP) — Activists say that in the latest violence in the Syrian capital, mortars have struck a Palestinian refugee camp in Damascus, killing 15 people.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Friday that the Yarmouk camp was hit the previous evening. There were no reports on who had fired the mortars. The attack came amid government operations in the southern outskirts of the city as regime forces hunt down rebel sympathizers.

Also Thursday, the nearby neighborhood of Tadamon was shelled, sending plumes of black smoke into the sky.

Palestinians refugees in Syria have tried to stay out of the 17-month old uprising, but their camp is nestled in an area known for its support for the rebels.

There are nearly 150,000 refugees living in the narrow streets of Yarmouk.