June 4, 2011
Syrian security forces intensified their assault on protesters calling for President Bashar al-Assad to quit, killing at least 34 demonstrators in the latest crackdown in the city of Hama, activists said.
Thousands of protesters took to the streets after noon prayers on Friday in defiance of security forces determined to crush an 11-week a revolt against Assad’s 11-year rule.
Security forces and snipers fired at tens of thousands of demonstrators gathered in the city of Hama, where 29 years ago President Hafez al-Assad, Bashar’s father, crushed an armed Islamist revolt by killing up to 30,000 people and razing parts of the city to the ground.
Activists said at least 34 people were killed and scores wounded.
“The firing began from rooftops on the demonstrators. I saw scores of people falling in Assi square and the streets and alleyways branching out. Blood was everywhere,” a witness who gave his name as Omar told Reuters from Hama.