(CNN) — Nearly a week after a U.N.-backed cease-fire started, violence erupted in Syria yet again Wednesday, with both the government and opposition forces reporting deadly attacks.
Six members of law enforcement were killed and 11 injured when an explosive device went off in the Idlib province town of al-Mastoumeh, the state-run Syrian Arab News Agency said. An “armed terrorist group targeting the law enforcement personnel” set off the blast in the northern province, SANA reported.
A sniper shot and killed a police officer in the southern city of Daraa, the news outlet reported. It also said terrorists fired at law enforcement personnel in the Damascus countryside, killing one and wounding another.
The Local Coordination Committees of Syria, an opposition activist network, said security forces and their local militia allies killed at least 32 people. At least 20 of them died in Homs, where government forces shelled homes, accompanied by intense gunfire and military aircraft flying over the city. Other deaths occurred in Idlib, Daraa, Hama, Aleppo and the Damascus countryside.
Despite a relative drop in reported deaths immediately after the cease-fire deadline Thursday, violence has raged in Syria.
On Tuesday, the Local Coordination Committees reported 70 deaths. Most of them were in opposition strongholds and included some killed during Monday shelling. CNN cannot independently verify reports of violence and deaths because the government has restricted access by international media.
Syria has been engulfed in violence for 13 months as a national uprising spread after the government cracked down on peaceful protests. The United Nations estimates that at least 9,000 people have died since the protests began, while others put the death toll at more than 11,000.
President Bashar al-Assad’s regime has blamed terrorists for the violence, but activist groups have cited daily killings by government forces.
World powers have condemned the violence but haven’t been able to stop it. The U.N. Security Council and the Arab League have backed a six-point peace plan by their envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan.
Syria has also backed Annan’s mission and agreed to last week’s cease-fire.
A small team of U.N. observers is in the nation to monitor the cease-fire. The group arrived this week after the U.N. Security Council authorized the deployment of an advance team of 30 observers. Team members visited the towns of Zamalka and Irbeen in the Damascus countryside Wednesday, SANA reported.
Syria said Wednesday that it would offer aircraft to U.N. observers and called for the deployment of many more monitors in addition to the small team assembled there.
They will be “liaising with the Syrian government, security forces and the opposition members to establish the monitoring process across the country,” said Kieran Dwyer, a spokesman for the U.N. peacekeeping missions.
Damascus welcomes the deployment of more observers to ensure that the cease-fire holds, according to Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem.
“The presence of 250 international observers is logical and possible,” Moallem said in Beijing. “Syria has a real interest in the international observers’ mission, because our purpose is the stability of the Syrian people.”
Moallem “welcomed the participation” of “neutral countries” such as China, Russia, South Africa, India and Brazil in the observers’ team, SANA reported, quoting Syrian Ambassador to China Imad Mustafa.
Such nations “can play an objective and logical role” as opposed to what he said were the biased “goals or agendas affiliated to the U.S. and its policies,” SANA said, citing Mustafa. Those countries, particularly Russia and China, have opposed strong action against the regime.
The foreign minister was on a visit at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Yang Jiechi.
Yang urged Syria to comply with the cease-fire and implement Annan’s six-point peace plan to end the violence.
Along with calling for a cease-fire by the government and the opposition, Annan’s plan urges authorities to stop troop movement toward populated centers and end the use of heavy weapons. It favors a Syrian-led political process to end the crisis.
It also calls for the government to ensure “timely provision of humanitarian assistance” and to intensify “the pace and scale of release of arbitrarily detained persons,” and for freedom of movement for journalists and the right to demonstrate.
Anti-government resistance groups, including the Free Syrian Army, have emerged across Syria during the uprising. There has been talk in the Arab world and the United States of providing arms to these fighters, and there are fears of civil war if international peace initiatives fail.
While Qatar said it is not arming the opposition, it declared that “self-defense is legitimate” and did not rule it out.
“If the situation is not resolved soon, we have to help the Syrian people defend themselves,” Qatar Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr Al Thani said Tuesday in Doha. “But we do hope that Kofi Annan will succeed in his cease-fire efforts, implement his six-point proposal and initiate political talks to transfer power peacefully.”
As the violence continued, wives of U.N. ambassadors from Britain and Germany urged Syria’s first lady to “stop your husband” in his year-long bid to quash the uprising.
The roughly four-minute video posted on YouTube juxtaposes pictures of an elegant Asma al-Assad against images of other Syrian women and dead and wounded children.
“Speak out for the end of violence. That is what we want. Stop the bloodshed. Stop it now. We know this is a risk for you, but take this risk,” said Huberta von Voss-Wittig, the wife of Germany’s U.N. ambassador.
Voss-Wittig said Wednesday that the time is right for the plea.
“We think it’s a good moment now that the cease-fire has been installed. It’s very wobbly, it’s not quite working yet, but we think she should not hide behind her husband’s back anymore and should come forward with a straight message for peace.”