Aug 25 - President Bashar al-Assad hosts Islamic leaders for an iftar meal in Damascus while protests continue across Syria. Sunita Rappai reports.
Syrian TV shows footage of an iftar meal in Damascus hosted by beleaguered president Bashar al-Assad for Islamic leaders. Iftar marks the end of the fasting day during the holy month of Ramadan. In an address to the assembled scholars and leaders, Assad said Ramadan was a time for doing good deeds. He blamed 'morals' in Syrian society for the on-going crisis, adding that the army was protecting the nation. But activists say that Syrian forces raided an eastern tribal region for a second day on Thursday, extending the crack-down on pro-democracy protests. Video footage posted on a social media website overnight - which Reuters is unable to independently verify - shows yet more large protests across Syria. At this funeral purportedly in Damascus for a man killed in the protests, the crowd chants: "The one who kills his own people is a traitor". Sunita Rappai, Reuters