Syrian troops shelled a restive district on Saturday and conducted sweeping raids, one day after security forces killed about 40 people in one of the deadliest crackdowns in months in the country’s uprising, activists said.
The Syrian opposition’s two main activist groups, the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the Local Coordinating Committees, said shells slammed into the Baba Amr district of Homs. Raids and arrests also were reported around the eastern city of Deir el-Zour.
Activists said there were casualties, but their number was not immediately clear.
The popular revolt against Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime has proved remarkably resilient over the past seven months, with protests erupting every week despite the near-certainty the government will respond with bullets and tear gas. The UN estimates the regime crackdown on the protests has killed 3,000 people since March.
Much of the bloodshed Friday happened after protests had ended and security forces armed with machine guns chased protesters and activists, according to opposition groups monitoring the demonstrations. At least 40 people were killed, according to the observatory and the LCC.