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Syria criticizes U.S. for supporting "terrorist acts" against army

(Xinhua)

13:55, September 30, 2011

DAMASCUS, Sept. 29 (Xinhua) -- The Syrian foreign ministry strongly condemned Thursday recent U.S. statements voicing support for "armed terrorist" groups' violent acts against the Syrian army and said these statements "clearly demonstrate the U.S. involvement in encouraging armed groups to practice violence against the Syrian army."

In a statement obtained by Xinhua, the foreign ministry said a recent statement made by U.S. State Department deputy spokesman Mark Toner was "irresponsible and encourages all acts of terrorism and anarchy to serve foreign targets that contravene the Syrian people's interests."

In his statement made on Sept. 26, the U.S. official described attacks against the Syrian army as a "normal" act.

"Syria stresses its determination to carry out its duties in preserving security and stability and in defending its citizens and their safety, as well as to confront all attempts to interfere in its internal affairs," the statement said.

In a related development, pro-Syrian regime demonstrators have pelted the car of the U.S. ambassador to Damascus, Robert Ford, with eggs and tomatoes during his visit to the office of Hasan abdul Azim, a prominent Syrian opposition figure, according to a Xinhua reporter.

The reporter cited witnesses at the scene as saying that the ambassador's driver hit a demonstrator with his car, injuring him at his forehead. Witnesses said about 10 Syrian security vehicles interfered to help the ambassador to flee the scene.

Ahmad Hanin, a witness, told Xinhua "we hit him with eggs and potatoes because we despise him.... Let America mind its business and stay away from us."

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