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Troops and armour storm Syria's Hama, 10 killed-activists

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation - Wed, 14 Dec 2011 16:08 GMT
Author: Reuters
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AMMAN, Dec 14 (Reuters) - Syrian troops backed by tanks killed at least 10 people when they stormed the city Hama on Wednesday after a three day general strike in support of a nine month pro-democracy uprising that had shut most businesses, activists said.

In the first armoured incursion into Hama since a tank offensive in August ended large protests in the city centre, troops entered districts north and east of the Orontes River, which runs through the city, 240-km (150 miles) north of Damascus, firing machineguns and ransacking and burning closed shops, they said.

Heavy civilian casualties were reported in the Hamidiya neighbourhood. Insurgents tried to stop the advancing forces at Hadid bridge and two armoured vehicles were reported destroyed, activists in contact with residents said.

(Reporting by Khaled Yacoub Oweis, Amman newsroom)

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