U.N. observers find signs of Syria massacre

Thousands of Syrians from Mareh, a city in the northern countryside of Syria, protest against the massacre in Tremseh, July 13, 2012. Vedat Xhymshiti/AFP/Getty Images

Last Updated 5:01 p.m. ET

(CBS/AP) BEIRUT - U.N. observers investigating Syria's latest reported mass killing said they found signs of a heavy assault that targeted specific homes of opponents of the Assad regime.

The observers' statement Saturday was the first outsiders' look in the village of Tremseh, where activists say dozens were killed this week by government troops. The team says it could not yet confirm the toll, but numbers have ranged from about 50 (the government's estimate), to 150 to 200 or more (as reported by the opposition).

An 11-vehicle observer team entered the village Saturday to "seek verification of the facts," after the U.N. was informed that a cease-fire there was in place.

The observer team said that it found pools of blood and blood splatters in several homes in Tremseh, along with bullet casings.

It said the attack "appeared targeted at specific groups and houses, mainly of army defectors and activists."

It says it confirmed an attack took place Thursday using artillery, mortars and small arms. The mission head had said Friday that observers stationed nearby witnessed government tanks and helicopters attacking Tremseh.

Anti-regime activists say government troops surrounded the village on Thursday and shelled it before they entered with pro-regime thugs and killed people in the streets.

They say they have confirmed the deaths of 150 people and that many more are missing.

The government denies its troops caused the deaths, blaming "terrorists."

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