Assad loyalists attack US, French embassies

Reuters , Monday 11 Jul 2011

Bashar Al Assad's supporters attack French and US embassy in Damascus, three days after the U.S. and French ambassadors visited the city of Hama to show support for pro-democracy protesters

French embassy guards in Damascus fired live ammunition to disperse loyalists to President Bashar al-Assad who tried to break into the compound on Monday and are still surrounding it, diplomats in the Syrian capital said.

A similar crowd broke into the U.S. embassy but later left, they added. A U.S. embassy official said the response of the Syrian authorities was "slow and insufficient".

There were no immediate reports of casualties in the attacks, which came three days after the U.S. and French ambassadors visited the city of Hama in an unprecedented show of support for pro-democracy demonstrators, who have been gathering in the hundreds of thousands in Hama despite deadly military assaults on the city, scene of a 1982 massacre by the military.

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