Syrian forces kill one as tanks enter coastal city

August 13, 2011 18:39


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BEIRUT - Syrian troops killed at least one person as they swept into a coastal city on Saturday, activists said, in a crackdown on protests against President Bashar Assad which drew criticism from an international Muslim group.

The 57-member Organization of Islamic Cooperation, adding its voice to growing Arab pressure on Assad, called for the immediate halt of the military campaign against protesters which activists say has killed 1,700 civilians in five months.

Saturday's killing in the Mediterranean city of Latakia came a day after security forces shot dead 20 people during nationwide marches in which demonstrators called for Assad's overthrow and vowed defiantly they would "kneel only to God".

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said one person was killed and 15 wounded in heavy gunfire after around 20 military vehicles entered the southern Ramle district of Latakia, where 10,000 people had demonstrated on Friday.

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