US calls Syrian forces to pull back from Hama
The United States urged Syria on Tuesday to end its crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators and withdraw from the city of Hama, where nine people were killed earlier in the day, DPA reported.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland reiterated US concerns about ongoing attacks against protestors in Syria.
"The government of Syria claims it is interested in a dialogue with the opposition. Yet, its actions in cities like Hama and along the Turkish border directly undermine the credibility of its words and its initiative," she said.
Nine people were killed Tuesday when Syrian security forces opened fire on residents preventing them from entering the central city of Hama. More than 40 residents were injured in the restive city, the Local Coordination Committees of Syria (LCC) reported online.
"We urge the government of Syria to immediately halt its intimidation and arrest campaign, pull its security forces back from Hama and other cities, and allow the Syrian people to express their opinions freely so that a genuine transition to democracy can take place," Nuland said.
The government crackdown in Hama followed President Bashar al-Assad's dismissal of the governor after anti-government demonstrators held a massive rally in the provincial capital on Friday.