Syrian Rebels Report New 200+ Massacre

More than 200 executed by Syrian forces in Daraya
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2012 5:49 AM CDT
Syrian Rebels Report New 200+ Massacre
Syrian boys play next to a house destroyed in a Syrian government bombing last week that killed more than 40 people, in Azaz, on the outskirts of Aleppo, Syria, Friday, Aug. 24, 2012.   (AP Photo/Muhammed Muheisen)

Another grisly massacre is being reported from Syria today, with activists saying that more than 200 bodies killed execution-style have been discovered in Daraya, a blue-collar Sunni town southwest of Damascus, reports Reuters. Government tanks swept into Daraya on Aug. 23, killing many, and were apparently followed by house-to-house raids and apparent executions. "In the last hour, 122 bodies were discovered and it appears that two dozen died from sniper fire and the rest were summarily executed by gunshots from close range," one activist told Reuters by telephone. The official state news agency said that Daraya has been "cleansed" of the "remnants of armed terrorist groups."

Anti-government groups claimed 440 people across Syria were killed by government forces yesterday, one of the highest single-day death tolls since the uprisings against Bashar al-Assad's government began in 2011. The majority of yesterday's killings were in the Damascus area, along with 40 in Aleppo and 28 in the heavily Sunni Deir al-Zor. In other news, a grim-faced Syrian Vice President Farouk Al-Sharaa was spotted in public for the first time in weeks today, reports the AP, ending speculation that he had defected. (More Syria stories.)

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