At least 30 people were killed in the Syrian city of Hama as security forces stormed the flashpoint protest centre, a witness told AFP in Nicosia on the phone.
A Hama resident who managed to escape the city today said that "the bodies of 30 people who were killed during shelling by the army have been buried in several public parks."
The witness, who declined to be identified for security reasons, said scores of people were being treated in
hospitals for injuries and that fires broke out in several buildings.
"Tanks are deployed throughout the city, particularly in Assi Square and citadel and outside the citadel," he said
about landmarks in the city centre of Hama.
The source charged that "yesterday (Wednesday) the Syrian army used bombs that break up into fragments when they
explode," in a likely reference to cluster bombs.
The city echoed with the intermittent sound of machine gun fire on Thursday morning, after intense shelling the previous day, the witness said, adding "snipers were positioned on the roofs of private hospitals."
"Conditions are very difficult in the city. Communications, electricity and water are cut and there are food shortages," he added.