Jan. 3 - Opposition acitvists say dozens are feared dead after a car bomb blast at a filling station in Damascus. Paul Chapman reports.
PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS CONVERTED 4:3 MATERIAL Dozens are feared to have died in what Syrian opposition activists said was a car bomb blast at this filling station in Damascus. The activists said the petrol station was packed with people queuing for increasingly-scarce fuel at the time. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. But one activist said there had been increasing brawls at the station between customers and militia loyal to President Bashar al-Assad. With no end in sight to Syria's 21-month civil war, U.S troops have arrived in neighbouring Turkey to operate Patriot missile defence batteries along the border. Two batteries have been set up at Turkey's request after repeated incidents of gunfire from Syria. The weapons are designed to intercept other missiles or aircraft. Turkey said on Thursday the influx of refugees from Syria has so far cost the country 500 million dollars. Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said there were now more than 150, 000 refugees on its territory. The United Nations has put the number of dead in Syria's conflict at more than 60, 000. It gave no breakdown on how many were rebels, soldiers or civilians.