BEIRUT -- As vote counting was underway Friday in Egypt’s landmark presidential elections more than a year after the ousting of President Hosni Mubarak, throngs of protesters in Syria again took to the streets in anti-government rallies, pressing on with their own "Arab Spring" revolt against President Bashar Assad.
In the video above, uploaded to YouTube by opposition activists, demonstrators hold up letters spelling out "WE ARE NOT TERRORISTS" and "OUR DEMAND IS FREEDOM" in a show of resistance to Assad, whose government routinely refers to the armed rebels as terrorists. The clip was said to be shot Friday in the town of Binnish in Idlib province.
Syrian opposition activists used Facebook to call for protests under the slogan of “Our next rendezvous -- Damascus,” probably in a bid to encourage more protests in the Syrian capital, a bastion of security forces and the military. Demonstrations were reported in several Damascus neighborhoods.
As the protests raged, the Local Coordination Committees opposition network reported 19 more people killed across Syria, including five in Aleppo where government troops fired to disperse demonstrations in the Bustan Al-Qasr and Salahuddin neighborhoods. Syrian state media reported that terrorists had killed nine people, including several children, with explosives and gunfire.
The video below is said to show security forces on the attack Friday in the Damascus district of Qudsaya. The clip shows men in green uniforms running down a street wielding sticks. The caption posted with the video on YouTube claims security forces flooded in after a demonstration in the area:
Another video purports to show what happened next -- someone in Qudsaya being arrested. In the clip, a young man is led away by men in green uniforms to an unknown location:
This video is said to show thousands of people protesting in the Salahuddin area of Aleppo on Friday, presumably before the reported attack by security forces:
The next video is said to show the reported attack on Aleppo protests in the Salahuddin area. Loud noises that sound like gunfire can be heard:
-- Alexandra Sandels