State TV Claims 19 Security Forces Also Slain by ‘Gunmen’
On the other hand, Syria’s state-run TV claimed that 19 security forces members were killed by “gunmen” affiliated with the rallies. The government has been accusing the protesters of being “armed gangs” rather than reformists, but this is the first specific claim of police deaths from them.
Though the accuracy of the claims could not be confirmed, it has raised concerns among human rights groups that the sudden announcement will be used as a pretext for even more violent measures against calls for reform. Already early Saturday there were reports of forces firing on funerals for the slain.