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Obama administration slaps sanctions on Syria

WASHNGTON/AMMAN (Reuters) – Washington imposed sanctions on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for human rights abuses on Wednesday in a dramatic escalation of pressure on Syria to cease its brutal crackdown on protesters. Assad had been partly rehabilitated in the West over the last three years but Western powers have condemned…

Syria death toll climbs amid anti-regime protests

DAMASCUS — Syrian troops killed three people and wounded several others on Saturday in the border town of Tall Kalakh, a witness said, as the toll rose despite a presidential no-shoot order and dialogue offer. “The security forces, who had been encircling Tall Kalakh since the morning, fired machineguns. At…

Activists: Syrian gov’t crushing dissent town by town

DAMASCUS (AFP) – Syrian security forces kept crushing dissent town-by-town and rounding up opposition leaders on Thursday, activists said, in an unrelenting crackdown that Washington has slammed as “barbaric.” The army and security services arrested dozens of people in the flashpoint coastal city of Banias and the neighbouring villages of…

U.S. imposes sanctions on Syrian figures after more bloodshed

AMMAN (Reuters) – Security forces killed more than 60 people across Syria on Friday during demonstrations demanding the ouster of President Bashar al-Assad, and the United States imposed new sanctions on key figures. A medical source told Reuters soldiers in Deraa killed 19 people when they fired on thousands of…

Thousands call for overthrow of Syria’s Assad

AMMAN (Reuters) – Thousands of Syrians called for the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad Sunday 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…

Syrian forces raid homes, Assad opposition mounts

AMMAN (Reuters) – Secret police raided homes near Damascus overnight, rights campaigners said on Sunday, as popular opposition to Syria’s authoritarian President Bashar al-Assad increased following bloody attacks on pro-democracy protesters. Security forces and gunmen loyal to Assad have killed at least 112 people over the last two days. They…

Security forces kill at least 49 during Syria protest: activist

AMMAN (Reuters) – Syrian security forces shot dead dozens of protesters on Friday, rights activists said, the bloodiest day in a month of escalating demonstrations against the rule of President Bashar al-Assad. Activist Ammar Qurabi said at least 49 people were killed in unrest which swept the country, mainly from…

Syria arrests dozens over unrest

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Syrian security forces arrested dozens of people, rights groups said Saturday, after thousands marched in pro-democracy protests in unrest that has posed the gravest challenge to President Bashar al-Assad’s rule. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights named 21 people who it said had been rounded up by…

Syria’s Assad deploys army in port to keep order

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – President Bashar al-Assad, facing the gravest crisis in his 11-year rule, deployed the army in Syria’s main port of Latakia for the first time after nearly two weeks of protests spread across the country. Assad, 45, who has made no direct public comment since protests started sweeping…

Yemen’s president says he’s ready to step down

Cynthia Johnston and Mohamed Sudam SANAA (Reuters) – Yemeni President Ali Abdullah said on Friday he was ready to cede power, the third Arab ruler who may be forced out by popular protests which began in North Africa and have now spread into the Gulf, Syria and Jordan. Saleh said…

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