Babylon & Beyond

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SYRIA: Thousands rally for funerals of slain protesters in Homs [Video]

April 18, 2011 |  8:34 am

Thousands of mourners turned out to bury protesters who were shot and killed in the city of Homs following Sunday's anti-government protests, reaffirming popular rejection of concessions by President Bashar Assad in the face of an ongoing brutal crackdown by his security forces.

Picture 3 Although the number of deaths could not be confirmed, one Homs resident who participated in the funeral procession said about 20 people had been killed in Homs and 30 from surrounding villages. As of Monday evening, Al Jazeera reported 25 killed in Homs and up to 30 around the country.

"The people are chanting for freedom and the fall of the regime, the regime that oppresses people," the resident told Babylon & Beyond. "The people will not submit to this oppression."

Sunday's protests were organized in response to Assad's speech before his new handpicked government in which he promised to lift the decades-old emergency law but also referred to legislation in the works that could give his security forces similar powers.

-- Meris Lutz in Beirut

Videos: Thousands attend funerals for protesters slain by security forces in Homs on April 17, 2011. Credit: YouTube