Activists say 5,000 killed in Syria in August

Deadliest month since uprising began 17 months ago

BEIRUT (AP) -- Two Syrian activist groups say about 5,000 people were killed in Syria in August, making it the deadliest month since the uprising began more than 17 months ago.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Sunday that 5,440 people, including 4,114 civilians were killed.

The Local Coordination Committees, another activist group, said 4,933 civilians were killed in August.

The civil war witnessed a major turning point in August when President Bashar Assad's forces began widely using air power for the first time to crush the revolt.

The fighting also reached Syria's largest city, Aleppo, which had been relatively quiet for most of the revolt.

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