Syrian Forces Raid Homes, Arrest Dissidents

Protesters Call for Strike as Regime Sets Up Checkpoints

Funerals continued to be held across Syria for the hundred plus protesters killed during Friday’s protests. There were a few people killed in marches again on Sunday, but the focus appears to have shifted to dissidents.

Indeed, homes across metro Damascus were raided overnight and into Sunday morning, and opposition figures say that nationwide scores of political opponents were rounded up. Arrests were also reported in the southern city of Daraa.

Less than a week ago when Syria’s government announced the end to a half century of “emergency rule” leading protesters scoffed, saying the regime’s policies toward dissent would not change. Even this might have been overly optimistic, as the regime has now set up checkpoints across the capital and has killed protesters at a rate unheard of before the move. The situation, it seems, has gotten even worse.

In reaction protesters are calling for a general strike, and the demonstrations are likely to continue to escalate nationwide. Each Friday of violence has been met the following Friday by even bigger protests. After what is being called the Good Friday Massacre, the regime is likely to face an even greater backlash.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.