Witnesses say the Syrian army has entered the key port city of Banias following a shootout in which at least four anti-government protesters were killed and dozens of others were wounded.
An eyewitness says soldiers on army trucks and jeeps entered the Mediterranean city on Monday morning, taking up positions around key buildings and intersections.
The witness, speaking on the phone from Banias, says schools and shops were shuttered amid anticipation of more clashes. He spoke on condition of anonymity, fearing reprisals.
Witnesses and human rights activists say Syrian security forces and pro-government gunmen killed four protesters in Banias on Sunday as hundreds were gathering for an anti-government rally. State TV reported that nine soldiers were killed in an ambush near the city. Agencies