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Abu Qais said that at least 20 people were killed by raids in the Yalda suburb on Wednesday night, in the south, while the Observatory reported that 47 people had been killed in the Jdaidat Artouz neighborhood to the southwest. Videos posted by activists show piles of bloody corpses, many with visible bullet holes. The videos could not be independently authenticated.

International condemnation of Syria’s handling of the uprising is growing, but with President Bashar Assad protected by China and Russia in the Security Council, there has been no effective action in response.

Under pressure from Brazil, Russia, India and China, a General Assembly resolution sponsored by Arab countries and meant to condemn the regime was watered down to remove calls for Assad’s departure. Any mention of sanctions was also removed.

The United NationsSyria policy has been further hamstrung by the resignation of Annan, who first came up with the six point peace plan to resolve the crisis, including a cease-fire that was supposed to take effect in mid-April but never took hold.

The U.N. World Food Program, meanwhile, sounded the alarm Thursday over the humanitarian situation in Syria with close to 3 million people needing food and livestock assistance in the next 12 months — more than 10 percent of the country’s population of 22 million.

The study carried out by the WFP as well as the Syrian Agricultural Ministry said the country’s agricultural sector has lost $1.8 billion this year from damaged crops and livestock. It’s not just the fighting that has kept farmers from their harvest but also shortages in fuel, electricity and labor to work the farms.

The statement warned that the country’s poorest would be the hardest hit.

U.S. officials, however, said Thursday that the Obama administration will ramp up its humanitarian aid to Syrian civilians by $12 million, increasing the total to $76 million. The funds will go to U.N. agencies, the International Red Cross and other organizations doing relief work. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to divulge the information.

A day earlier, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell told reporters that the U.S. had added $10 million to its “nonlethal assistance” supplies to the Syrian opposition, which includes communications equipment. The new total now stands at $25 million.

Syria’s Foreign Ministry condemned the move, describing giving money to the opposition as “funding terrorism,” in contravention of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

Associated Press writers Zeina Karam in Beirut and Bassem Mroue in Kilis, Turkey, Peter Spielmann at the United Nations and Bradley Klapper in Washington, D.C., contributed to this report.