Syrian lawyers stage a sit-in at the courthouse: report

14:24, July 26, 2011      

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Scores of Syrian lawyers staged Monday a sit-in at the courthouse in the capital Damascus, calling for the release of all detained lawyers and political prisoners, the local news website Day Press reported late Monday.

The lawyers gathered at the Damascus's courthouse to protest against "the outlaw practices carried out by security forces against the lawyers in many Syrian cities," said the report, adding that they expressed their solidarity with all political detainees and stressed the need for the independence of the Syrian judiciary system from the security sway.

It said the lawyers dispersed without any incidents or arrests.

In a related development, the report said that Syrian authorities detained on Monday a number of people in some suburbs of Damascus as part of its campaign to bring in those who are wanted.

The country is witnessing overnight protests, calling anti- regime slogans and demanding the release of all detainees, according to the report.

Separately, the report said the Syrian army is still carrying with military campaign in the central city of Homs, as the troops deployed in some areas in the city while the electricity and telecommunication were cut off.

The deployment of the army in Homs came after an unknown " saboteurs" caused a passenger train, carrying aboard 480 passengers, to derail on Saturday in al-Souda area near Homs, killing the driver and wounding 16 passengers.

The Syrian authorities blamed the four-month-old unrest on " armed groups and foreign conspiracy" and stressed that it would track down gunmen who have intimidated the people and damaged public and private properties. The Syrian government said 1,200 members of the security forces and army personnel had died since the eruption of protests. According to activists, more than 1,600 civilians have died and some 10,000 have been detained.

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