**Red Cross Widens Area Involved in Syrian Civil War**
The International Red Cross says there is a state of civil war across more parts of Syria, widening its earlier designation.
The group had previously said such conflict existed between government forces and opposition groups in the flash-point areas of Homs, Hama and Idlib.
But ICRC spokesman Hicham Hassan said Sunday hostilities have spread to other parts of Syria. Activists and residents say Damascus was the scene of the heaviest fighting to hit the capital since the 16-month uprising against Mr. Assad's rule began.
The Red Cross finding comes as Syria denied its forces used heavy weapons and aircraft against the village of Tremseh last week, despite findings of the U.N. monitors who visited the area Saturday and Sunday.
A Syrian foreign ministry spokesman says the military operation in the village targeted armed fighters.
**Japan Begins Cleanup after Record Rains**
Residents of southwestern Japan are returning home after four days of record rainfall that caused massive flooding.
Hundreds of thousands of people on the island of Kyushu began to clean up Monday, as the death toll from flooding and landslides reached at least 27.
Sunday, Japanese troops airlifted supplies to more than 3,000 thousand people who were stranded in Fukuoka prefecture, southwestern Japan.
More than 90 millimeters of rain an hour fell in Kyoto prefecture in western Japan, flooding hundreds of homes.
The Japan Meteorological Agency said Sunday that the worst is over, but predicted more heavy rain in some areas through Monday.