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The World

April 19, 2011

Syrian govt warns Syrians not to protest

BEIRUT — The Syrian government is warning people not to take part in any protests.

An Interior Ministry statement broadcast on Syrian Television on Tuesday says Syrian laws will be implemented to safeguard the people's security and the country's stability.

It called on Syrians to "assist" authorities by refraining from taking part in any protests.

The statement comes hours after security forces opened fire on hundreds of anti-government protesters staging a sit-in, shooting live ammunition and tear gas before chasing them through the streets for hours.

Witnesses said at least one person was killed and many others wounded.

A monthlong uprising has posed the most serious threat to the regime in one of the Middle East's most authoritarian states.

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