Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
News, July 2011
Syrian Forces Kill 11 People Near Damascus, Protests Continue Despite New Election Law
July 27, 2011
Khaleej Times, (AFP) 27 July 2011, 4:01 PM
Syrian security forces shot dead at least 11 people, including a child aged seven, in a swoop on the town of Kanaker near Damascus early Wednesday.
“The security forces raided homes at dawn on Wednesday and during the operation 11 people were shot dead and more than 250 arrested,” said Ammar Qurabi, head of the National Organisation for Human Rights, reached by telephone from Nicosia.
Qurabi provided AFP with the names of the victims.
He said the operation in Kanaker, a town of 25,000 people, was backed by “a bulldozer and army tanks” and targeted people aged between 15 and 40.
He added that at least 11 vehicles were used to carry away those arrested in the swoop.
According to Qurabi, the raid was an “act of vengeance” because inhabitants had supplied provisions to anti-regime protesters in the southern city of Daraa, the main hub of protests against President Bashar al-Assad’s hardline rule, when it was besieged by troops earlier this year.
The authorities have used deadly force to quell dissent, with at least 1,486 civilians reported killed since the uprising began mid-March, thousands arrested and thousands more fleeing the country, human rights groups say.
Some rights groups say at least 12,000 people have been detained since the anti-regime protests erupted, but it is unclear how many are still being held and how many have been released.
5 killed, 20 injured in clashes with security forces in Syria: activists
DAMASCUS, July 27, 2011 (Xinhua) --
A Human rights activist says the Syrian security forces killed five people and injured other 20 on Wednesday on suburbs of the capital Damascus.
Abdul-Karim al-Rihawi, head of the Syrian League for Human Rights, told Xinhua by phone that four people were killed and 20 injured in the southern Kanaker suburb and one civilian was killed in the Damascus suburb of Harasta.
He said security forces are conducting a "pre-emptive campaign" before the Muslims' holy month of Ramadan starts, as some opposition parties have said that they would demonstrate daily during the Ramadan to increase pressure on the government.
Activists say many anti-government protesters have recently been opting for overnight protests, aiming for a time when the security presence thins out.
Syria blames the unrest on gunmen and religious extremists looking to stir up sectarian strife in the country.
Editor: Yang Lina
Syria's cabinet endorses general election bill
DAMASCUS, July 26, 2011 (Xinhua) --
The Syrian cabinet endorsed late Tuesday the general elections bill as part of the government's reform program to tamp down more than four months of unrest that swept the country since mid-March.
The endorsement came during a session chaired by Syrian Prime Minister Adel Safar.
The bill aims to regulate the election of parliament and local council members and to ensure the integrity of the electoral process. It also stipulates the formation of the Supreme Commission for Elections to manage the election process.
The move, announced by the official SANA news agency, came two days after the government endorsed a multi-party bill that would allow a political pluralism in the country under the rule of the Baath party for 40 years.
The bill still needs endorsing by the parliament which is scheduled to convene on Aug. 7, before being enacted as a law in a presidential decree, the report said.
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