News / Middle East

At Least 22 Killed in Syrian Government Attacks on Port City

This image made from amateur video and released by Shams News Network and accessed via The Associated Press Television News on Saturday, Aug. 13, 2011, shows a long shot of military vehicles lined up on road, backdrop of buildings taking up positions near
This image made from amateur video and released by Shams News Network and accessed via The Associated Press Television News on Saturday, Aug. 13, 2011, shows a long shot of military vehicles lined up on road, backdrop of buildings taking up positions near
Scott Bobb

Syrian anti-government activists say at least 22 people have been killed in two days of attacks by government forces on the port city of Latakia.  Reports say gunships have shelled neighborhoods from the sea, while tanks are rolling through the city.  

Amateur video released by Syrian dissident groups, but which could not be independently identified, showed attacks by Syrian government forces on residential neighborhoods in Latakia.

The government news agency SANA told a different story, saying security forces were pursuing gangs armed with machine guns, grenades and explosive devices.  The news agency said two government soldiers and four gunmen had been killed and 41 troops wounded.

In this image taken from video made available Sunday Aug. 14, 2011, by Shaam News Network, in which they purport to show armored vehicles as they take up positions along the water front of Latakia, Syria.
In this image taken from video made available Sunday Aug. 14, 2011, by Shaam News Network, in which they purport to show armored vehicles as they take up positions along the water front of Latakia, Syria.

Residents said the only individuals with firearms were government forces and pro-government militia known as Shabiha.

It was the second day of raids in the port city, after thousands of people rallied Friday to call for an end to the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

Thousands of people have been staging similar demonstrations in a half-dozen other cities around the country.  Amateur video posted Sunday showed demonstrators protesting Friday in Homs.

They were shown chanting slogans against the al-Assad government and in support of demonstrators in other Syrian cities.

Human-rights groups say more than 400 people have been killed since the government began a major crackdown two weeks ago at the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.  At least 1,700 hundred people have reportedly died since Syria's anti-government uprising began five months ago.

Human-rights groups say they have documented nearly 3,000 disappearances and 25,000 arbitrary arrests.  They say they plan to appeal to the United Nations to launch an investigation into crimes against humanity on the part of the Syrian government.

The rising level of violence been condemned the United Nations and many Arab and Western governments.

Western governments have placed travel bans on three-dozen senior Syrian officials and blocked financial activities of several companies with ties to the regime.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Friday urged countries to stop buying Syrian oil and gas. She also called for countries who have been supporting the Syrian government to, in her words, get on the right side of history.

Syrian dissidents say Damascus is using revenues from its petroleum exports to pay for the crackdown. They say the Western response has been weak and slow.

Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Brutality Eroding IS Financial Support

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says IS's penchant for publicizing beheadings, other brutal forms of punishment hurts group’s bottom line More

Studies: Climate Change a Factor in Disasters in Syria, California

The studies point to the possibility of clear and present dangers from a threat often considered to be far in the future More

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials and human rights organizations assert that Pakistani authorities are using deadly attack at school in Peshawar as pretext to push out Afghan refugees More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Kerry Seeks Assurances of Russian Non-Interference in Ukrainei
X
March 03, 2015 3:11 AM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, that his country could face further consequences to what he called its “already strained economy” if Moscow does not fully comply with a cease-fire in Ukraine. The two met, on Monday, on the sidelines of a U.N. Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where Kerry outlined human rights violations in Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern Ukraine. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports from Geneva.
Video

Video Kerry Seeks Assurances of Russian Non-Interference in Ukraine

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, that his country could face further consequences to what he called its “already strained economy” if Moscow does not fully comply with a cease-fire in Ukraine. The two met, on Monday, on the sidelines of a U.N. Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where Kerry outlined human rights violations in Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern Ukraine. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports from Geneva.
Video

Video Smartphones May Help in Diagnosing HIV

Diagnosing infections such as HIV requires expensive clinical tests, making the procedure too costly for many poor patients or those living in remote areas. But a new technology called lab-on-a-chip may make the tests more accessible to many. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials have expressed concern over reports of a crackdown on Afghan refugees in Pakistan following the Peshawar school attack in December. Reports of mass arrests and police harassment coupled with fear of an uncertain future are making life difficult for a population that fled its homeland to escape war. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports from Islamabad.
Video

Video Ukrainian Volunteers Prepare to Defend Mariupol

Despite the ongoing ceasefire in Ukraine, soldiers in the city of Mariupol fear that pro-Russian separatists may be getting ready to attack. The separatists must take or encircle the city if they wish to gain land access to Crimea, which was annexed by Russia early last year. But Ukrainian forces, many of them volunteers, say they are determined to defend it. Patrick Wells reports from Mariupol.
Video

Video Moscow Restaurants Suffer in Bad Economy, Look for Opportunity

As low oil prices and Western sanctions force Russia's economy into recession, thousands of Moscow restaurants are expected to close their doors. Restaurant owners face rents tied to foreign currency, while rising food prices mean Russians are spending less when they dine out. One entrepreneur in Moscow has started a dinner kit delivery service for those who want to cook at home to save money but not skimp on quality. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video US, Cuba Report Progress in Latest Talks to Restore Ties

The United States and Cuba say they have made progress in the second round of talks on restoring diplomatic relations more than 50 years after breaking off ties. Delegations from both sides met in Washington on Friday to work on opening embassies in Havana and Washington and iron out key obstacles to historic change. VOA’s Mary Alice Salinas reports from the State Department.
Video

Video Presidential Hopefuls Battle for Conservative Hearts and Minds

One after another, presumptive Republican presidential contenders auditioned for conservative support this week at the Conservative Political Action Conference held outside Washington. The rhetoric was tough as a large field of potential candidates tried to woo conservative support with red-meat attacks on President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress. VOA Political Columnist Jim Malone takes a look.
Video

Video NYC's Restaurant Week: An Economic Boom in Fine Dining

New Yorkers take pride in setting world trends — in fashion, the arts and fine dining. The city’s famous biannual Restaurant Week plays a significant role in a booming tourism industry that sustains 359,000 jobs and generates $61 billion in yearly revenue. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports.
Video

Video Brookhaven at Cutting Edge of US Energy Research

Issues like the Keystone XL pipeline, fracking and instability in the Middle East are driving debate in the U.S. about making America energy independent. Recently, the American Energy Innovation Council urged Congress and the White House to make expanded energy research a priority. One beneficiary of increased energy spending would be the Brookhaven National Lab, where clean, renewable, efficient energy is the goal. VOA's Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Southern US Cities Preserve Civil Rights Heritage to Boost Tourism

There has been a surge of interest in the American civil rights movement of the 1950s and '60s, thanks in part to the Hollywood motion picture "Selma." Five decades later, communities in the South are embracing the dark chapters of their past with hopes of luring tourism dollars. VOA's Chris Simkins reports.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More