July 9 - Demonstrators run for cover in Syria as they are surrounded by smoke and gunfire. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Amateur video shows demonstrators running through the streets of Hama in Syria. They are surrounded by fire and smoke and the sound of gunfire. More footage, purportedly shot on Friday, shows demonstrators pelting stones at Syrian security forces. Hama, about 125 miles north of Damascus, has seen some of the biggest demonstrations against the government of President Bashar al-Assad. It is also the site of a brutal crackdown by his father nearly 30 years ago. In Homs, video, which could not be independently verified by Reuters, shows a tank on the street. Several volleys of gunfire can be heard in what appears to be a deserted street. Some residents seek shelter in a side street. The relentless sound of gunfire continues. Demonstrators in other parts of Syria hold nighttime protests continuing to call for the end of the regime. Rights groups say at least four demonstrators were killed Friday. Syria has banned most foreign media from the country making it difficult to verify accounts by activists or the government. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters.