Oct. 1 - Syrians march in support of army defectors who have been engaged in battles with loyalist troops. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Amateur video out of Syria appears to show soldiers firing weapons in Hama. The video, which could not be independently verified by Reuters comes amid reports that government forces are firing at army defectors. More than 10,000 soldiers have reportedly deserted the Syrian army and defectors are attacking security police who enforce loyalty to President Bashar al-Assad Demonstrators were also out in force in Hama, offering support to defected soldiers who are battling government forces in Rastan. Residents of Rastan say at least 1,000 deserters and armed villagers have been fighting loyalist forces, who are backed by tanks and helicopters. More footage out of Deraa shows more demonstrations. The United Nations says 2,700 people have been killed in Assad's crackdown one of the highest death tolls in the wave of revolts which has toppled three Arab leaders this year. Video purportedly from Damascus shows soldiers on watch. Syria says more than 700 soldiers and police have been killed in the uprising, which it blames on armed groups backed by foreign powers Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters.