Deraa bares brunt of Syrian crackdown

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Deraa bares brunt of Syrian crackdown

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Syrian forces are reported to have killed at least 35 civilians in Deraa, the city at the heart of five weeks of anti-government protests.

Despite the recent lifting of the 48-year-old emergency law, military operations have intensified and the latest amateur video purports to show army snipers firing at protesters.

The crackdown has targeted other towns too: Banias, Homs and the Damascus suburb of Douma have also seen tanks move in.

After cutting off the water and electricity in Deraa, Syria’s military claims to be protecting the people from extremist groups, but a local human rights organisation says more than 400 people have been shot dead since the unrest began.