Syrian activists and rebels say opposition fighters have launched a new offensive against government forces in a number of areas in the country's northwest.

Rebels groups said in a statement Monday that the attacks in rural parts of the Latakia province, a government stronghold, are in retaliation for violations of a fragile cease-fire that began in late February.

Other fighters attacked government positions in the rural part of the adjacent Hama province.

The U.S. and Russian-brokered cease-fire had reduced violence across Syria despite alleged violations on both sides. The opposition says the government has breached the agreement more than 2,000 times.

The cease-fire was intended to facilitate talks in Geneva, which resumed last week. A Syrian opposition member in Geneva, Mohammed al-Abboud, says they have the right to defend themselves.