Syrian forces fire at mourners after mass funeral

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PostSat Apr 09, 2011 6:32 pm » by Ironlikealion


Syrian forces fire at mourners after mass funeral

Syrian security forces opened fire on mourners near a mosque in the flashpoint city of Deraa after a mass funeral for pro-democracy protesters, two witnesses said on Saturday.

Security forces used live ammunition and tear gas to disperse thousands of people who were chanting freedom slogans after assembling near the old Omari mosque in the old quarter of the southern city near the border with Jordan, they said.

Dozens of people have been killed in a wave of protests across Syria against the rule of President Bashar al-Assad. Accusing the government of committing a crime against humanity, a Syrian rights group said at least 37 were killed across the country on Friday.

"What is happening in Syria is a flagrant violation of (human rights)," the National Organization for Human Rights said in a statement.

"Syrian security committed (in Deraa) what could be called a crime against humanity ... It fired indiscriminately on protesters and killed and wounded tens of them."

After Friday's bloodshed, Syria's interior ministry warned it would not tolerate breaches of the law and would deal with "armed groups," state news agency SANA said on Saturday. Activists were concerned this could herald a harsher crackdown.

Inspired by Arab uprisings that began in Tunisia and Egypt, popular demonstrations calling for greater freedom have shaken Syria. Assad has responded with a blend of force against protesters, gestures toward political reform and concessions to conservative Muslims including closing Syria's only casino.

LIVE ROUNDS IN LATAKIA

In the early hours of Saturday, Syrian security forces used live ammunition to disperse a pro-democracy protest by hundreds of people in a Sunni district of Latakia, causing scores of injuries and possible deaths, residents said.

One witness said he saw water trucks hosing down blood on the streets near the Takhasussieh School in the Sleibeh district of Latakia, Syria's main port, 330 km (210 miles) northwest of the capital Damascus.

"One cannot move two steps in the streets without risking arrest. It is difficult to know if there were deaths, but we heard heavy AK-47 fire," a resident said.

"One thing is certain. This regime of thugs is exposing its fangs. Brutality is the only thing it knows," he said by telephone.

European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton strongly condemned the violence and deaths, and urged Syria to implement "meaningful political reforms."

There were rallies on Friday from the Mediterranean port of Latakia to Albu Kamal on the Iraqi border, as demonstrations entered a fourth week in defiance of Assad's security crackdown and despite his growing list of reform pledges.

The rights group said in a statement that 30 people were killed on Friday in Deraa, the epicenter of protests. It added that three were killed in the central city of Homs and three others in Harasta, a Damascus suburb, as well as one in Douma.

Latakia, where Saturday's early shooting took place, is a majority Sunni city, with significant numbers of Alawites, who follow an offshoot sect of Shi'ite Islam, and Christians.

Several hundred protesters were left in Sleibeh by the time security forces and irregular forces loyal to Assad attacked around midnight, residents said.

There was no immediate comment from the Syrian authorities, who have arrested journalists and banned independent media from Latakia and other cities where mass protests against Baath Party rule have taken place.

The party took power in a 1963 coup, banning all opposition and imposing an emergency law which is still in force. The party is headed by Assad, a member of the Alawite sect, which comprises 10 percent of Syria's population.

ASSAD SEES FOREIGN CONSPIRACY

A large pro-democracy protest demanding freedom of speech and assembly erupted in the coastal city of Tartous on Friday, with a big turnout by Alawites, who comprise around half of the population there.

Assad has said the protests are serving a foreign conspiracy to sow sectarian strife in Syria.

Protesters and security forces said they sustained casualties on Friday. Activists said at least 22 people were killed when police opened fire on thousands of protesters in the southern city of Deraa. State television said armed groups killed 19 policemen and wounded 75 in the city.

The interior ministry accused "plotters pushed by known foreign sides" of firing at protesters to create a rift between people and police.

"(They) have infiltrated the ranks of the demonstrators to sow discord between the citizens and the security forces. There is no more room for leniency or tolerance in enforcing law ...

"We will not allow sabotage .... and harming national unity," the ministry said.

"Syrian authorities, in order to preserve the security of the country, citizens and the governmental and services establishments, will confront these people and those behind them according to the law," it added. Activists said the statement showed that authorities were planning to step up a crackdown on protesters.

"We have fear now after the statement that oppression in Syria (will increase) against civilians under the pretext of (confronting) armed groups," Ammar Qurabi, head of the National Organization for Human Rights in Syria, told Reuters.

Thousands of protesters in many Syrian cities turned out on Friday, chanting: "Freedom, freedom, we want freedom." Some shouted: "We sacrifice our blood and soul for you, Deraa."

STATUE SMASHED

In Deraa, where demonstrations first broke out in March, residents said security forces fired on thousands of protesters, who set fire to a building belonging to the ruling Baath Party and smashed a statue of the president's brother, Basil.

Authorities have blamed armed groups for the violence and state television broadcast footage on Friday of plain-clothed gunmen it said fired at both security forces and civilians.

Deraa residents had said funerals would inflame emotions.

"There is a lot of anger at what happened yesterday and people are calling for revenge at the blood spilled," one resident, Abu Jabbar, told Reuters by phone.

Syria has prevented news media from reporting from Deraa.

A key demand of the protesters is the repeal of emergency law. Assad ordered a committee to study replacing it with anti-terrorism legislation, but critics say it will probably grant the state many of the same powers.

Protests broke out in the northeastern city of Qamishli despite Assad's pledge to grant citizenship to stateless Kurds. It was not clear how many Kurds would be given nationality, but at least 150,000 Kurds are registered as foreigners as a result of a 1962 census in the eastern region of al-Hasaka.

Under Assad, who took over as president in 2000 when his father died after 30 years in power, Syria has been Iran's closest Arab ally, a major player in Lebanon and a supporter of militant groups Hamas and Hezbollah.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/us_syria;_yl ... FuZm9yY2Vz
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PostSat Apr 09, 2011 7:13 pm » by Eliakim


Read Joshua chapter 8&9 we wrote about it yesterday on our blog.

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PostSat Apr 09, 2011 7:30 pm » by Troll2rocks


ironlikealion, ignore eliakim she says this every time something bad happens in the world. Trys to claim some kind of credit for being a prophet, she actually thinks she is a chosen daughter of god and that she is the next coming of Jesus, no joke.

She only has until the 24th before she becomes a total laughing stock when her prophecy "of an awesome transition" fails to happen.

My advise just laugh and pity, until she loses her dignity and pride in 2 weeks.
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PostSat Apr 09, 2011 7:52 pm » by Ironlikealion


how dare you talk like that about the queen of the south !!!





:P

well i say live and let live , as long as no one gets hurt what's the harm ?
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PostSat Apr 09, 2011 7:56 pm » by Troll2rocks


ironlikealion wrote:how dare you talk like that about the queen of the south !!!





:P

well i say live and let live , as long as no one gets hurt what's the harm ?


lol

She becomes delusional and is a danger to herself and others, but yeah true, not our problem :cheers:
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PostSat Apr 09, 2011 8:05 pm » by Ironlikealion


well i don't know to me it seems she's a product of the new age culture ,where people
that "channeling" with god/Jesus/messiah's/saints/angels/demons whatever, is
the norm , I've seen this kind of people goes both ways, some indeed
become delusional and insane ,others use it to actually help people and because
some people actually believe them they actually do manage to help people,
i don't know to me eli always seems to sit on the more positive side of the spectrum.
rather then the negative .
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