Feb. 18 - Activists say Syrian security forces fire on a large crowd at a funeral that turned into a protest against President Assad in Damascus. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Amateur video out of Syria appears to show a funeral under attack in Damascus. The video, which could not be independently verified by Reuters, comes amid reports that shootings took place at funerals for three people killed Friday in protests against President Bashar al-Assad. People scramble amid the sound of gunfire. Armed soldiers are seen on the streets. A witness told Reuters by telephone, "They started firing at the crowd right after the burial." The opposition Syrian Revolution Coordination Union said gunfire near the cemetery had killed one mourner and wounded four others, including a woman who was hit in the head. A shopkeeper told Reuters many protesters were arrested. Assad says the turmoil engulfing Syria is a ploy to split the country. Footage purportedly out of Homs appears to show a city under attack. The U.N says more than 5,500 people have been killed in Syria since the uprising began last March. Syria has banned most independent media from the country making it difficult to verify accounts from activists or the government. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters