'Death toll in Syria likely as high as 120,000'

By REUTERS, JPOST.COM STAFF
May 14, 2013 17:39

The number represents a marked increase from the original number of 82,000 dead that was released earlier this week.

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Family cover the body of a victim of the Syria conflict

syria conflict funeral 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)

BEIRUT - At least 94,000 people have been killed during Syria's two-year conflict, but the death toll is likely to be as high as 120,000, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Tuesday.

The number in this report is vastly higher than one published by the Observatory on Sunday which stated that 82,000 people have died as a result of the conflict with a further 12,500 missing.

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The group said that at least 41,000 of those confirmed killed were Alawites, the sect of President Bashar Assad.



Rami Abdulrahman, the head of the Observatory, said that the Alawite death figures were confirmed by eight different Alawite sources in coastal cities and in Homs.

Syria's conflict started as peaceful protests against the four-decade rule of the Assad family but turned into civil war, pitting the Sunni majority against minorities, in particular the Alawites, an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam.

"We believe the real figure of those killed from both sides is above 120,000 because both sides are being discreet on their casualties," Abdulrahman said.

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