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Syrian Army Shells Homes, Hundreds Flee to Lebanon

Families fled to Lebanon Saturday when Syrian forces shelled homes in the village of Tal Kalakh. Syria has entered its eighth week of protests.
By Chana Ya'ar
First Publish: 5/15/2011, 12:53 AM / Last Update: 5/15/2011, 7:46 AM

The Syrian army began shelling homes Saturday in the southern village of Tal Kalakh.

At least a dozen families fled the village and traveled to the Lebanese border town of Wadi Khaled. Some of the family members were injured, according to a report broadcast on Voice of Israel government radio.

The fleeing Syrians told the Lebanese residents that Syrian soldiers had begun a siege of their village early Saturday morning. Eyewitnesses reported that Syrian security forces also opened fire Saturday at protesters in the central city of Homs. Three people were killed in the incident.

Six other demonstrators were killed by Syrian security forces on Friday as government forces continue their attempts to put down protests across the country.

The killings took place in Daraa, Damascus and Homs when snipers and security forces opened fire on protesters. Elsewhere around the country, security forces used clubs and tear gas to quell demonstrations.

At least 500 Syrians crossed into Lebanon Saturday as the grassroots attempt to topple the regime of President Bashar al-Assad enters its eighth week.

Lebanese officials told reporters that more than 5,000 Syrians have fled the country in the past several weeks. According to human rights organizations, more than 775 people have been killed since protests began in mid-March.