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Syria Warns It May Strike Lebanon

Assad's regime says rebels are crossing back and forth over border

(Newser) - With Syrian militants crossing back and forth across the northern Lebanon border, the Syrian foreign ministry has told Lebanon to put a stop to it or else face military strikes, reports Reuters via the Christian Science Monitor . "Syrian forces have so far exercised restraint from striking at armed gangs... More »

Syria Bulldozes Homes in Hama

Thousands forced out; clashes continue in Damascus

(Newser) - Syrian government forces are bulldozing large swaths of homes in Hama in a sweep that's uprooting thousands of residents, according to new videos. "So far they have razed 120 buildings," says one local. City blocks are being plowed over as officials go door-to-door asking residents to leave,... More »

Opposition: New Syria Massacre Kills 200

Most of the victims in Hama said to be civilians

(Newser) - Opposition forces in Syria are reporting a new massacre by government troops, and this one might be the worst yet. Activists tell Reuters that more than 200 people, mostly civilians, were killed in the village of Tremseh in central Hama province. They cite a familiar pattern : strafing by helicopters and... More »

UN Enters Alleged Syria Massacre Site

Reporter calls scene 'ghastly' but says no bodies have been spotted

(Newser) - Things just keep getting worse in Syria: Activists say the government is shelling Homs again, possibly in preparation for a large troop surge. But UN monitors have finally made it to the site of the alleged massacre in Qubair, after being waylaid and shot at yesterday, reports Sky News . "... More »

UN Monitors Shot At Trying to Probe Syria Massacre

Clinton, Cameron condemn killings

(Newser) - UN monitors came under small arms fire today while trying to reach the site of Syria's latest alleged massacre, Ban Ki-moon told the UN General Assembly today. Ban said he'd heard the news only "a few minutes ago," according to CNN, and denounced Bashar al-Assad as... More »

Opposition Reports New Massacre in Syria

Unconfirmed reports say more than 80 dead, including women and children

(Newser) - Syrian opposition leaders say pro-government forces are responsible for another massacre on the scale of the one in Houla . Early reports say about 80 people were killed today in Hama province, with about half of the victims women and children, according to the BBC and Reuters . As in Houla, witnesses... More »

Now China Condemns Syria Massacre

41 more killed in Hama, say activists

(Newser) - Even China is stepping up its rhetoric against the violence in Syria, today condemning Friday's massacre of 108 people, including 34 children, in Houla, reports Reuters . But China, much like Russia , is still avoiding directly attacking the government of Bassar al-Assad. "China feels deeply shocked by the large... More »

Huge Blast Kills 70 in Hama

Government, rebels have different stories for what happened

(Newser) - A massive explosion rocked Hama today, leveling buildings and, depending on who you believe, either killing at least 16 (Syrian state media's count) or up to 70, including 13 children and 15 women (the rebel count). The sides also have different stories for what caused the blast; rebels say... More »

Syria Changes Ceasefire, Shells Towns

Regime concocts new condition, demands monitoring mission

(Newser) - Today was supposed to be the ceasefire deadline in Syria, but Bashar al-Assad's regime has done anything but cease its fire. Instead, it suddenly laid out new conditions, demanding that the ceasefire coincide with a deployment of a new international monitoring mission, the Wall Street Journal reports. Syrian forces... More »

Syria Launches Ground Assault to 'Clean' Baba Amr

Western journalists trapped inside city

(Newser) - Syrian ground troops advanced on Homs today, indicating that the regime was about to launch a ground assault to take the restive city. One Syrian official told the AP that the rebel-held Baba Amr neighborhood would be "cleaned" in a matter of hours. Three western journalists are still trapped... More »

Assad Orders Referendum on New Constitution

It would allow more parties, and include term limit

(Newser) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has ordered that a referendum be held later this month on a new constitution that would allow for additional political parties and limit the president to two 14-year terms, Syria's state-run TV station announced today. But opposition leaders immediately dismissed the gesture as an attempt... More »

As More Die, Syria Frees 755 Prisoners

6 killed in Hama, which Arab League observers are to visit tomorrow

(Newser) - At least six people are dead after Syrian troops fired into a crowd of thousands of protesters gathered in Hama, say activists. Arab League observers are scheduled to arrive in that city tomorrow, and the protesters were apparently working their way toward the main square to participate in a sit-in... More »

Hama in Ruins as Syrian Forces Withdraw

Vehicles burnt, shell casings everywhere in west Syrian town

(Newser) - After a week-long assault on Hama, the Syrian town has been left full of blackened, burned-out vehicles and uncollected garbage, with spent shell casings from all sizes of weapons strewn everywhere, reports the Telegraph in a rare first-hand look at what it calls "evidence of a ferocious, one-sided assault.... More »

Assad Forces Kill at Least 31 in Continued Crackdown

Toll could hit as high as 69, activists say

(Newser) - Two Syrian rights groups say government forces have killed at least 31 people in the latest phase of their crackdown on dissent, and the toll for the day could rise to 69. Today's casualties were mainly in the eastern city of Deir el-Zour and the central city of Houleh.... More »

24 More Die Amid Syria Crackdown

Humanitarian situation in Hama reportedly desperate

(Newser) - The Syrian military tightened its suffocating siege on the city of Hama today, and activists said security forces killed at least 24 civilians the day before in a nationwide crackdown on anti-government protesters. A Hama resident, who snuck out yesterday for supplies, said tanks shelled the city last night, which... More »

UN Condemns Syria as 45 More Die

Security Council issues statement, falls short of resolution

(Newser) - In its first meaningful action since the Syria uprising began five months ago, the UN Security Council issued a statement yesterday condemning the government's use of force against civilians. The statement, finally agreed upon after three days of talks , "condemn[s] widespread violations of human rights" and calls on... More »

Syria Continues Crackdown; UN to Meet for 2nd Day

At least 24 killed on first day of Ramadan

(Newser) - The first day of Ramadan brought no relief for protesters in Syria: At least 24 were killed yesterday, and the UN Security Council will hold a second day of talks on the situation today. Yesterday's violence included President Bashar al-Assad's tanks continuing to shell the city of Hama,... More »

Death Toll Surges to 100 in Syria Crackdown

Tanks roll in to derail Ramadan protests

(Newser) - The death toll in the massive pre-Ramadan crackdown on Syrian rebels has surged to 100 and climbing. Tanks stormed Hama, ground-zero of the uprising, as well as several other towns in the second-bloodiest day since the revolution began in March, reports the Washington Post . President Obama said he was "... More »

Syria Kills 62 in Pre-Ramadan Crackdown

Mostly in city of Hama

(Newser) - The Syrian army raided cities across the country before dawn today, killing at least 62 people—most of them in the flashpoint city of Hama where a barrage of shelling and gunfire left bodies scattered in the streets, activists and residents said. The government is escalating its crackdown ahead of... More »

Thousands Rally in Syria After US Ambassador Visits

Crowds jam the streets of Hama

(Newser) - Hundreds of thousands of protesters poured onto the streets of Hama to decry the Assad regime today—right after a visit from US and French ambassadors. The pair came to the city yesterday, and left before protests began today, but their mere presence was a strong symbolic show of support... More »

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