Tue, November 29, 2011
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Some 20 killed in 24 hours across Syria: report

2011-11-25 20:39:34 GMT2011-11-26 04:39:34(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

DAMASCUS, Nov. 25 (Xinhua) -- Some 20 people were killed in the past 24 hours across Syria, including law-enforcement members, gunmen and a civilian, the official SANA news agency reported Friday.

Two law-enforcement members were killed Friday when a mine planted by armed groups blasted in central Hama province, SANA reported, adding that another sergeant was killed in southern Daraa province when a group of gunmen opened fire at a vehicle that was ferrying food to the law members.

In central Homs province, specialized forces conducted a qualitative operation on Thursday in the al-Rastan area, during which 16 gunmen were killed and dozens arrested, SANA said. The operation also led to the confiscation of large quantities of arms and ammunition, including diverse Israeli-made weapons, mines and mortar shells, the report said.

Meanwhile, SANA said that three explosive devices went off on Friday in several neighborhoods in Hama, but no injuries were reported. It reported that explosives experts managed to dismantle four devices that were set to go off in several crowded areas in Daraa.

In northern Idlib province, a roadside bomb exploded at Taftanas town on Thursday, killing a 13-year-old boy who was herding sheep, according to SANA.

On the opposition side, the Local Coordination Committees, an activists' network, said that as many as 26 people, including two kids, were killed Friday across Syria, as anti-government protesters rallied under the title "the Free Syrian Army Protects Us."

The so-called Syrian Free Army, which is composed of army defectors, has attacked many army bases over the past weeks. Their recent assault targeted a bus carrying elite army pilots on Thursday, which led to the killing of 10 officers.

The Syrian Army said in a statement on Friday that the attack on the pilots was considered a dangerous terrorist escalation, " which unveiled the scheme that aims to weaken and target our army forces."

"We affirm the involvement of foreign parties with the aim of weakening the fighting ability of the army," said the statement.

The beneficiaries are the enemies of Syria such as Israel, it said, stressing the army's full readiness to carry on with its mission to protect the citizens' lives.

Currently, there are mounting cries among Syrians, even from anti-government activists, to halt all kinds of violent acts whether they are against government's targets or not, as armed resistance, which the Syrian government has claimed to be fighting to justify its crackdown on protesters and which has been dismissed by many other countries, has practically become true.

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