Government forces fire on protesters in Syria
Security forces opened fire early Tuesday on anti-government protesters in the western Syrian city of Homs, a day after funerals for 14 demonstrators were held there, protesters and residents said, dpa reported.
At least two people were injured, Al Jazeera reported. The government forces also used tear gas to regain control of the central square in Homs, it said.
"Shooting is heard echoing through the city," a woman living near the square told The New York Times. "The mosques are all calling for help. We fear that many are killed in the square."
Thousands of demonstrators assembled late Monday for a sit-in at the square to demand President Bashar al-Assad's resignation. Security forces blocked off the square and ordered the protesters to disperse by 2:30 am (2330 GMT Wednesday). The gunfire was heard at 2:15 am, Al Jazeera said.
The shooting came a day after the burials of the demonstrators killed by security forces Sunday when hundreds took to the streets demanding more freedoms. The mourners shouted slogans against Assad, who became president in 2000.
The Interior Ministry said Syria was facing an "armed insurrection" in the unrest that began a month ago.
The protests continued despite Assad saying Saturday that emergency law, which has been in place since 1963, might be taken off the books as early as next week. He also promised political reforms.