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SYRIA: Government forces open fire on protesters

Syria protest 
Government forces opened fire on protesters in several towns as thousands took to the streets across Syria on Friday chanting "Freedom" in support of an uprising in the southern city of Dara, news reports said.

An activist told the Associated Press that witnesses had reported one demonstrator shot dead by security forces in the coastal city of Latakia and another killed in the central city of Homs.

There were reports of more casualties in Sanamein and in nearby Dara, where a witness told CNN that protesters burned a picture of President Bashar Assad and attacked a statue of his father. The accounts could not be independently confirmed.

In the capital, Damascus, pro- and anti-government crowds clashed outside the historic Umayyad mosque, hitting each other with leather belts, AP reported. 

The unrest erupted in the last week when residents of Dara, a Roman-era city near the Jordanian border, demanded the release of 20 political detainees. Inspired by protests in other Arab countries, their demands soon swelled to include an end to the government's secret police organization, which is headed in Dara by Assad's cousin.

At least 15 people were killed in a deadly crackdown Wednesday in Dara. Hoping to head off more protests, presidential advisor Bouthaina Shaaban announced a number of reforms Thursday.

She said the government was drafting a law that would allow opposition parties to operate and loosen restrictions on news media. She also promised wage increases and health insurance for public servants. And she pledged to consider ending the emergency law in place since 1963 that has allowed the government to detain anyone without a warrant or a trial.

-- Alexandra Zavis

Photo: Pro- and anti-government protesters clash after Friday prayers in Damascus, Syria. Credit: Muzaffar Salman / Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (11)

Where is the LA Times’ resident Zionist’s propagandist and his commentaries regarding the Middle East?
Has it dawned on Jehudah Ben-Israel as an illegal Zionist colonist on Syria’s Golan Heights that, if Syria underwent a true democratic revolution, Israel’s illegal annexation of Syria’s Golan Heights would mean that Israel’s citizens would have vacate the Golan?

i want my mtv

Hey great!!! Just Another opportunity for a "Kinetic Military Operation".

Obama's press office just came out with the new term for a war, that is not a war, in Libya. In true double speak, they are calling it a Kinetic Military Operation.

If this is NOT an act of war against Libya, I guess we have to apologize to the Japanese for our confusion when they bombed Pearl Harbor.

The world is crying for freedom however the powers that be are to greedy to give it. I wonder when the people of the USA will follow suit .

This is about people rejecting Oppression - Like they have been doing since the beginning of time.

Those Zionists must be Hella smart, getting the whole Arab world up in arms and mad at their benevolent dictators. Assad is a first-class turd. He is the same as all the other Arab despots in the Middle East who uses the Palestinian/Israeli conflict to further their own narrow adgendas. FYI nonpropaganda there are other photos showing Syrian protesters and none of them are carrying signs saying "Down with the Zionists!"

SO LET ME SEE IF I UNDERSTAND THIS:

IT'S OKAY FOR THE SYRIAN GOVERNMENT TO SHOOT AND KILL ITS OWN ARMED TROUBLEMAKERS; BUT IT'S NOT OKAY FOR THE LIBYAN GOVERNMENT TO SHOOT AND KILL ITS OWN ARMED TROUBLEMAKERS.

ONE SITUATION REQUIRES LOOKING AWAY AND THE OTHER REQUIRES THE INTERVENTION OF NATO AND F-16s.

DID I MISS SOMETHING HERE ABOUT THE HYPOCRISY OF THE USA AND WHY WE'RE SO UTTERLY HATED IN THE WORLD?

Power to the Syrian protesters! Assad is more than worthy of being overthrown.

Is this phony picture all you got?

Assad is NOT some kind of monster.

This is zionist propaganda.

Can't get any worse the US want Israel to handover the Golan to the spider, so whether we hand it over to that spider or a democratic Syria does not really matter.

But back to Egypt the reason the military are rushing through elections is because if other parties cannot get established those that do not vote for the MB, will vote for the NDP and they will be the majority. Meaning the NDP will form government and keeping the peace treaty. The the NDP can prevent the break up of the military corporate complex (military inc) of the Egyptian Military.

If the Administrative Court dissolve the NDP then the only established party and they will gain the majority will be the MB. These are the unknown knowns and that is what happens when one has no control over the situation and cannot shape events. It is unpredictable.

All is not lost however it takes 3 to 4 elections post dictatorship to see the outcome of democracy, in Iraq it will be the next whether radical Shiites take control of government. Of course for that to occur Iran will have take control of Iraqi Kurdistan politics. As the Iranian learned in the last elections, the way Iraq's political system has been constructed it is not so easy. In Egypt we did not have that pleasure.

So in Egypt if the MB take control that does not mean they will have control in 3 to 4 elections time. But of course it is the government that makes the laws and can repress opposition.

The MB and military have a marriage of convenience now both pursing their own objectives, the military want stability and security and as because the US does not let them use violence as with the down fall of Mubarak, there is no fear and it is very easy for the military to lose control. To maintain their monopoly over business, which they will need the NDP to gain majority. And the MB are eying the prize and trying to appear moderate to gain the majority.

But bad blood is bad blood and if the MB or the NDP come out on top, I would expect a bitter divorce between the marriage of convenience.

Time to start bombing Syria as well as Libya.


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