Protests in Qamishli
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Bloody clashes erupt during mass rallies across Syria

At least 72 protesters have been killed by security forces in Syria, rights groups say - the highest reported death toll in five weeks of unrest there.

Demonstrators were shot, witnesses say, as thousands rallied across the country, a day after a decades-long state of emergency was lifted.

Many deaths reportedly occurred in a village near Deraa in the south, and in a suburb of the capital, Damascus. BBC correspondents have not been allowed to enter Syria, but Owen Bennett-Jones filed this report from neighbouring Lebanon.

The BBC cannot independently verify the pictures shown, but they are thought to be amateur video from Friday's protests around Syria

  • 22 Apr 2011
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