BEIRUT - Syrian state television said on Monday that the death toll among security forces in the northwestern town of Jisr al-Shugour had risen to 40.
"The armed groups are using weapons and grenades ... the people in Jisr al-Shughour are urging the army to intervene speedily," it said. It said earlier that security forces had clashed with hundreds of gunmen who had set up blockades in the town.
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Demonstrations erupted Saturday in Jisr al-Shughour where protesters demanded
the removal of President Bashar Assad, residents said on Sunday.
killings began when snipers deployed on the roof of the main post
office fired volleys of bullets at a funeral for six protesters who were
killed on Friday, when a large protest demanding democracy came under
fire, they said.
the last 24 hours at least 31 people have been shot dead, among them
eight mourners at the funeral," said one of the residents, a history
teacher who gave his name as Ahmad said Sunday.
He said angry mourners torched part of the post office after the shooting.
The official Syrian news agency said "armed terrorist groups" killed
four policemen in the town, attacked public buildings and "spread terror
in the heart of citizens who called on the authorities to intervene
forcefully to protect them".
"The killings in Jisr al-Shughour are an act of revenge by the state for
the Friday protests and another attempt to silence a Syrian town
through the use of violence," Qurabi said.