Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's commitment to implement a cease-fire by April 10 has not stopped the violence in the country. On the contrary, the opposition claims it has intensified.
The truce is the keystone of a plan put forward by the former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Anan.
Hours after the government said it had started withdrawing its troops, government forces launched assaults on several cities. Loud explosions were heard in the city of Homs.
In the Damascus suburb of Douma, activists described the onslaught as one of the most violent to date.
The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the military is clashing with rebel army defectors in two northern towns.
Some say Assad has no intention of abiding by the U.N.-brokered truce.