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July 2, 1989 | BEATRICE HAMIZRACHI, Associated Press
U.S. and Israeli archeologists have unearthed a Roman metropolis that in its heyday was the ancient world's equivalent of New York. Founded in about AD 10 by Herod Philip, son of King Herod the Great, ancient Baniyas grew over the next several hundred years "into a huge city," archeologist Vassilios Tzarferis of the Israel Antiquities Department said recently. "We can estimate the population in Roman times of up to 15,000 people, which for those days means it was a New York," Tzarferis said.
May 13, 2011 | By Borzou Daragahi and Alexandra Sandels, Los Angeles Times
Protests erupted throughout Syria, including in the capital and the suburbs of the second-largest city, after weekly Muslim prayers on Friday, as a peaceful popular uprising against the rule of President Bashar Assad and his family entered a second month. FOR THE RECORD: A photo of Pakistani protesters was used in an earlier version of this report and incorrectly identified demonstrators as Syrian protesters. Demonstrations erupted in and around the capital, Damascus, with reports of protests breaking out near a mosque in the city's Zahirah Jadidah district, less than two miles from the city center, and the Mezze district, activists said.
May 6, 2011 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske and Roula Hajjar, Los Angeles Times
Syrian authorities intensified a crackdown on opposition activists Thursday, arresting hundreds of people ahead of another planned day of demonstrations after weekly prayers, witnesses said. Soldiers stormed Damascus' Saqba suburb, entering homes and detaining residents, according to witnesses and antigovernment activists. In At Tall, another Damascus suburb, more than 800 people were arrested Thursday, witnesses said. "They pretended that they were following an organized list when they carried out the arrests, but in reality, it was just a random selection of young men that were detained," said an activist in the capital who asked not to be named out of fear of retaliation by authorities.
May 15, 2011 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times
Hundreds of Syrians fled to Lebanon and three people were killed by snipers in the western border town of Tall Kalakh on Saturday, activists said, as President Bashar Assad claimed to have begun arranging talks with opposition figures in the face of protests that have shaken his regime. Activists released the names of the three men they said were killed Saturday, but the deaths could not be independently verified. Another person reportedly died after fleeing across the border, activists said.
March 19, 2011 | By Garrett Therolf, Los Angeles Times
Anti-government protesters took to the streets in Syria on Friday for the third time in a week despite the threat of beatings and arrest. In Damascus, protests erupted after noon prayers at the Umayyad Mosque in the old city. Dozens of protesters were met by police and plainclothes security officers, and several were beaten and arrested. In Dara, a city close to Syria's southern border with Jordan, witnesses said protesters smashed statues and set fires. A video on YouTube showed fire brigades using water cannons to disperse crowds.
April 29, 2011 | By Borzou Daragahi and Meris Lutz, Los Angeles Times
Fresh protests erupted in Syrian cities and towns after weekly Muslim prayer sermons Friday despite dire warnings by security officials and violent suppression of protests by the armed forces. Amateur video posted to the Internet showed protests in the Lebanese border city of Homs, the third largest, the coastal city of Baniyas, Deir Azour in the country's east, the northwestern town of Kafr Zita and southern town of Jassem, near the embattled flashpoint city of Jassem. Activists also reported protests in the suburbs of Damascus and the coastal city of Lattakia, where there were reports of gunfire.
May 4, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell, David S. Cloud and Edmund Sanders, Los Angeles Times
BEIRUT - Huge explosions were reported in Damascus early Sunday, just two days after a reported Israeli airstrike in Syria targeting surface-to-air missiles possibly destined for neighboring Lebanon and the militant group Hezbollah. Syrian state media also blamed Israel for Sunday's predawn onslaught, saying that Israeli jet fighters had launched rockets on the capital. The site targeted was a military research facility in Jamraya, just outside Damascus, state media reported.
January 24, 2001
The longtime seepage in the U.N.-imposed economic blockade of Iraq is threatening to become a flood. American officials and oil industry sources have told The Times that a long-unused pipeline linking Iraq's Kirkuk oil fields to the Syrian port of Baniyas, was reopened about two months ago and is moving about 150,000 barrels a day to market. Even at the heavily discounted prices Iraq is charging, daily revenues amount to about $2 million, and that's separate from what Baghdad earns from its U.N.
April 10, 2011 | By Garrett Therolf and Alexandra Sandels, Los Angeles Times
Syrians on Saturday mourned the 37 people killed a day earlier in clashes with security forces, only to face fresh rounds of gunfire and at least one more death, human rights activists and witnesses said. In Dara, the southern city that has served as the focal point for more than three weeks of protests, Internet and phone connections were severed, but reports emerged that residents marched in honor of those killed there Friday and chanted, "The people want to topple the regime. " Security forces fired off shots to disperse the crowd; one person was killed and several others were taken to a hospital in critical condition, witnesses said.
April 29, 2011 | By Meris Lutz and Roula Hajjar, Los Angeles Times
Cracks appeared in the Syrian regime Thursday with the resignations of members of the ruling Baath Party and continuing reports of divisions in the military before another showdown with protesters expected Friday. About 200 people have resigned from the Baath Party in the last two days to protest the government's violent response to the unrest. Most of the resignations came from party members in the cities of Dara and Baniyas, which have been opposition hot spots. "My resignation was a message and duty," former party member Mohammad Sheghri said in Baniyas.
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