Gunfire erupts as army seals Syrian city

BEIRUT (AP) – Gunfire erupted across a key port city in northeastern Syria on Sunday after the army sealed the area off, deploying tanks and cutting communications. Human rights activists said there were fatalities.

Details were sketchy because telephone lines, Internet access and electricity apparently were cut in Banias.

Ammar Qurabi, head of Syria’s National Organization for Human Rights, quoted an eyewitness who managed to flee Banias as saying people had been killed and injured. It was not clear whether they were civilians or security forces.

Protests erupted in Syria more than three weeks ago and have been growing steadily every week, with tens of thousands of people calling for sweeping reforms in President Bashar Assad’s authoritarian regime. More than 170 people have been killed.

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I wear many hats but history, economics and political observance have always been a passion. I am a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Business with a degree in Information Systems and Digital Business with a minor in European History. I work for a small mom-and-pop IT consulting and software design company. We deal in servicing mostly government funded non-profit mental and behavioral health care agencies in the state of Ohio. In this I deal with Medicaid and Medicare funds and have a little insight on the boondoggles of government there. Thankfully the undemanding nature of my daily profession gives me ample time to read and stay aware of our current state of affairs which I find stranger than fiction in many instances. In addition to being in the IT field, I have also been self employed with a small contracting company so I might know a thing or two about the plight of small business that employs 71% of the American workforce. I however don't draw my knowledge from my day jobs, which I have had a few; I draw it from an intense obsession with facts and observation about the world in which I live. I do have formal education in things such as history, economics and finance particularly as it pertains to global issues, but I have come to find much of what I thought I knew from the formalities of a state university I had to unlearn through much time and independent research. I hope you enjoy what I bring you which is not often heard in the mainstream news outlets. I would like to think my own personal editorializing is not only edifying but thought provoking while not at all obnoxious. That last one may be a hard to achieve.

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