Syrian government troops aimed tank fire at unarmed civilians in the city of Al-Arida, near the Lebanese border, on Thursday.

The tanks fired at demonstrators who were gathered in a public square to protest against President Bashar Al-Assad's regime, according to a report broadcast by the British Broadcasting Company (BBC).

When the protesters dispersed, fleeing to their homes, the tanks began firing at the houses in the town, journalists reported.

Hundreds of Syrian civilians fled to the Lebanese side of the border.

Nevertheless, Syrian opposition groups called for mass demonstrations to be held on Friday, the Muslim Sabbath.

This week the Kurdish population in eastern Syria expressed its willingness to join in the protests that have recently begun to be called “Freedom Friday.”