Syrian forces kill 9 civilians, arrest leading Alawite

By REUTERS
April 24, 2011 18:46

Mansour al-Ali stopped after demanding democracy; thousands chant for Assad's overthrow; rights group calls for probe into Syrian violence.

1 minute read.



A Syrian protester holds the national flag.

syrian flag and protester_311 reuters. (photo credit: Muhammad Hamed / Reuters)

AMMAN - Syrian forces shot dead at least nine civilians on Sunday in the coastal town of Jabla following a pro-democracy protest the previous night, the Syrian human rights organization Sawasiah said..

In the restive city of Homs in central Syria, security forces arrested Mansour al-Ali, a prominent figure from the minority ruling Alawite sect, after he spoke out against the shooting by security forces of protesters demanding democratic change, another activist in Homs told Reuters.

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Thousands of Syrians Sunday called for the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad at a funeral for protesters killed by security forces in the southern town of Nawa, a witness said.

"Long live Syria. Down with Bashar!" the mourners chanted, their calls audible in a telephone call during the funeral. "Leave, leave. The people want the overthrow of the regime".

At least 15 people were killed on Saturday at mass funerals for the slain protesters, and rights campaigners said secret police raided homes near Damascus just after midnight on Sunday, arresting activists in the area.

Human Rights Watch is calling on the United Nations to investigate Syria for its violent crackdown on the protesters that left at least 112 dead over the weekend, the Associated Press reported on Sunday.

The New York-based group called on both the US and European Union to impose sanctions on those officials responsible for the violence.

JPost.com staff contributed to this report.


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