Pro-Syria rally marks uprising anniversary

By ELIZABETH A. KENNEDY Modified: March 15, 2012 at 6:58 pm •  Published: March 15, 2012
Advertisement
;

— Thousands of Syrians rallied Thursday in Damascus in a display of loyalty to President Bashar Assad, waving flags under a slate gray sky to protest the anniversary of a rebellion that the government says is driven by terrorists, gangsters and extremists.

Outside the Syrian capital, however, tanks and snipers besieged opposition areas, including the southern city of Daraa where the uprising began a year ago, touched off by the arrest of a group of youths who scrawled anti-regime graffiti on a wall.

One year into the Syrian revolt, the fight to oust Assad is cascading toward civil war with more than 8,000 killed and no end in sight to the bloodshed. Worst-case scenarios are playing out in a country where many remain shackled by corruption, a suffocating security apparatus and a family dictatorship that rules over 22 million people.

“We know that this is a criminal regime, but we didn't expect it to reach this amount of killing,” Amer Mattar, a 26-year-old activist, told The Associated Press from Jordan, where he fled to safety after being arrested twice in Syria.

Holding course

Despite widening international condemnation and biting sanctions, Assad's regime has remained intact and intelligence analysts say the rebels have yet to pose a serious challenge to his powerful military.

| |

Advertisement


Trending Now



AROUND THE WEB

  1. 1
    Hotel leaves Oklahoma City Thunder opponents telling ghost stories
  2. 2
    Check out the Thunder postseason playlist
  3. 3
    VIDEO: Blake Griffin dumps water on a fan
  4. 4
    Oklahoma City Thunder: Grizzlies guard Nick Calathes calls drug suspension unfair
  5. 5
    Dave Chappelle Reveals Shockingly Buff New Look
+ show more