Seventeen people were reported dead in Syria Wednesday as a result of continued clashes between government and opposition forces, a leading opposition group said.
The death toll included two children in the city of Homs, and a child in the Damascus suburb of Douma, the Local Coordination Committees of Syria announced.
The latest violence occurred as opposition leaders called for a nationwide general strike, and embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad huddled in Damascus with other regional leaders at an Arab League Ministers meeting. The meeting "was honest and friendly," and the group "felt that the Syrian government wants to work ... to reach a solution," Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabr Al-Thani said, according to Syrian state television.
"President Assad did not accept all the initiatives submitted to him, but he did not reject our points and requests," said Arab League Deputy Secretary-General Ahmed bin Heli. "Our main concern is to stop the bloodshed of the Syrian people." The delegation of Arab foreign ministers will resume talks with Syrian officials on October 30, he said.
A large pro-government rally, meanwhile, was held in downtown Damascus, state television reported.
The political upheaval came a day after Amnesty International issued a report accusing the Syrian government of torturing wounded protesters at state-run hospitals, saying the country's authorities have turned medical facilities and their staffs into "instruments of repression." Read More