Homs Is Calm, A Day After Syria-Wide Protests

The shelling in Homs has stopped for the moment. A small advance team of United Nations observers are visiting the country. On Friday, thousands turned out for anti-government protesters across Syria. NPR's Kelly McEvers reports that activists say at least 16 people were killed.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News, I'm Scott Simon. The U.N. Security Council has passed a resolution that would call for hundreds of monitors to enter Syria should the Syrian government not keep to the terms of a cease-fire. The government was supposed to pull its troops and heavy arms out of cities and towns, but as NPR's Kelly McEvers reports, dozens of people were killed during protests yesterday.

KELLY MCEVERS, BYLINE: Thousands of people turned out for anti-government protests across Syria yesterday, and in some cases, government forces responded with tear gas, live ammunition and intimidation.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTESTERS)

MCEVERS: This amateur video provided by activists show protesters fleeing from pro-government thugs in the city of Hama. Activists say at least 16 civilians were killed across Syria, either in attacks on protesters or in all-out shelling of neighborhoods like this one in the city of Homs that has been known to harbor armed rebels.

(SOUNDBITE OF EXPLOSIONS)

MCEVERS: Syrian state TV claims the rebels are the ones who violated the cease-fire. It says 18 soldiers were killed by rebels in southern and central Syria. If passed, the new U.N. Security Council resolution will send some 300 unarmed observers into Syria. There is already a small advance team of observers in the country now. If the government does not comply with the cease-fire, the Security Council will consider ,quote, "further steps."

Russia opposes any specific references to sanctions or military intervention, so for now the Security Council remains vague. So far today, residents of hot spots like the city of Homs say the shelling by government troops has stopped - for the moment. They say that's because some U.N. observers are visiting the city. Kelly McEvers, NPR New, Beirut.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to NPR. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.