Syrian activists reported a surge of bloodshed in the central Hamaprovince late Wednesday, with at least 23 people killed andpossibly many more. The reported mass killings are likely to ignite more anger nearlytwo weeks after the massacre of more than 100 people elsewhere inSyria as an international peace plan unravels and the countryspirals toward civil war. The exact circumstances of the violence in Hama were impossible toindependently confirm. Rami Abdul-Rahman, the head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatoryfor Human Rights, said he had gathered the names of 23 peoplekilled in shelling and other attacks. Amusement Park Water Slides
But the Local Co-ordinationCommittees, an activist group, said at least 86 were dead. Abdul-Rahman called on UN observers to visit the area immediately. “Do not wait until tomorrow in order to investigate this latestmassacre,” he said. Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said in a statementthat he was “deeply disturbed by media reports of attacks in theprovince of Hama that have killed dozens of people, including manywomen and children.” “This clearly demonstrates the downward spiral of violence in Syriathat is resulting from the ruthless repression of the Syrian peopleby the Assad regime,” Baird said. China Aqua Park Equipment
“Those who perpetrated theserepugnant, savage acts must be held to account.” Hama was the site of a notorious massacre in 1982, when Assad’sfather and predecessor, Hafez, ordered the military to quell aSunni rebellion. Amnesty International has estimated that between10,000 and 25,000 people were killed in the siege, thoughconflicting figures exist and the Syrian government has never madean official estimate. Opposition activists have been pushing for the ouster of SyrianPresident Bashar al-Assad. Assad says he is fighting a conspiracycarried out by terrorists and foreign extremists to destroy thecountry. (Muzaffar Salman/Associated Press) Activists say as many as 13,000 people have been killed in Assad’scrackdown against the anti-government uprising that began in March2011 with mostly peaceful protests but morphed into an armedinsurgency amid a violent regime crackdown. Lazy River Water Park
The violence in Syria has grown increasingly chaotic in recentmonths, and it is difficult to assign blame for much of thebloodshed. The government restricts journalists from moving freely,making it nearly impossible to independently verify accounts fromeither side. Wednesday’s reports of violence in Hama came on the heels of a horrific massacre on May 25 and 26 in Houla, a cluster of villages in the centralHoms province. Although Syria has seen relentless violence for morethan a year, the Houla massacre stands out for its sheer brutality.Many of the dead were women and children who were gunned down intheir homes.
UN investigators have blamed pro-government gunmen for at leastsome of the killings. The Syrian regime has denied responsibilityand blamed rebels for the attacks.