UN chief ‘deeply concerned’ over crackdown on protests in Syria

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has expressed deep concern over the situation in Syria, where security forces on Friday opened fire on demonstrators, killing at least 9, a statement from the UN press service said.

Protests demanding radical change have been raging in Libya since March 15. Tens of people have died so far. The Syrian leadership pledged last week to implement economic and political reform. On Tuesday, Syria’s cabinet resigned in an attempt to appease demonstrators.

Thousands of Syrians staged demonstrations after Friday prayers north of the capital Damascus and in the south of the country. Security forces opened fire on the protestors, killing at least nine people, according to a witness and a human rights activist.

“The Secretary General is deeply concerned about the situation in Syria, where more civilian deaths have been reported during the latest popular demonstrations,” the UN statement read.

He is “convinced that there is no alternative to an immediate and inclusive dialogue on comprehensive reforms to address the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people.”

“The secretary general reiterates his call on the Syrian government to abide by its international human rights obligations,” the statement read.

WASHINGTON, April 2 (RIA Novosti)

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