May 18th, 2012
02:17 AM ET

UN observers have dampening effect on Syrian violence, Ban Ki-moon says

Syrian forces opened fire Friday on anti-government demonstrators in Aleppo, the opposition claimed, a day after thousands purportedly took to the streets calling for an end to the regime in a city widely considered a stronghold of President Bashar al-Assad.

Security forces were attempting to break up a demonstration that began after dawn prayers in the mixed, upper middle class city in northern Syria, according to the Local Coordination Committees of Syria, an opposition network that counts casualties and organizes anti-government protests.

While there have been a number of demonstrations in Aleppo since the Syrian uprising began, the number of people publicly calling for al-Assad's ouster has increased significantly. It culminated this week with thousands of predominantly university students demonstrating, according to opposition groups, who posted videos of the protest outside Aleppo University on YouTube.

The size of the recent protests raise questions about whether al-Assad is losing his grip on the country's largest city where he has enjoyed support.

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Filed under: World
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. know hunger

    After over a year of protests and violent retaliation by the government the world has provided what?

    May 18, 2012 at 3:23 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    John McCain again is beating the war drums but Americans aren't listening.

    May 18, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. HIDE BEHIND

    Little to nothing being said by CNN on how arms shipments from now NATO controlled Lybia are being shipped through Lebanon to the rebel group supports.
    Nor how by using US/Saudi supported militia groups to transport has once again caused open warfare in Lebanon.
    Maybe US Censors have given out dpecific areas for each major media to report on.
    Who knows, andnow that latest Defense Appropriation bill has a rider that "LEGALIZES PROPAGANDA TO BE USED UPON AMERICAN PEOPLE" what was in effect now will is just another bailout for corpirate americas past crimes.

    May 19, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. chrissy

    @ HIDE BEHIND, people really need to read that new bill proposal carefully! Do Americans WANT to be under MILITARY rule? Because thats what it comes down to. We will be like all other 3rd world countries if our CONGRESS get their way. Vote them out!

    May 19, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse | Reply

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