Syria rebels storm Sunni village, kill 14 - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Syria rebels storm Sunni village, kill 14

Posted: Updated:
  • NationalMore>>

  • Man linked to gun said 'bomber' was best friend

    Man linked to gun said 'bomber' was best friend

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:24 PM EDT2014-07-23 18:24:42 GMT
    A man believed to have provided the gun used by Boston Marathon bombing suspects to kill a university police officer has been arrested on drug and weapon charges.
    A man linked to a gun used to kill a university police officer after the Boston Marathon bombing allegedly told police he smoked marijuana every day because, in his words, "my best friend was the bomber."
  • Nazi war suspect, 89, dies as extradition OK'd

    Nazi war suspect, 89, dies as extradition OK'd

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:24 PM EDT2014-07-23 18:24:29 GMT
    The lawyer for a suspected Nazi war crimes suspect says the 89-year-old Philadelphia man has died while awaiting extradition to Germany.
    An 89-year-old Nazi war crimes suspect died in custody hours before a U.S. ruling Wednesday that he should be extradited to Germany to face trial.
  • Arizona high court delays planned execution

    Arizona high court delays planned execution

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:02 PM EDT2014-07-23 18:02:06 GMT
    The U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for Arizona to carry out its third execution in the past year Wednesday following a closely watched First Amendment fight over the secrecy surrounding lethal injection drugs.
    Arizona's highest court on Wednesday temporarily halted the execution of a condemned inmate so it could consider a last-minute appeal.
By BARBARA SURK
Associated Press

BEIRUT (AP) - Syrian rebels rampaged through a Sunni village in the central province of Hama Wednesday, firing indiscriminately at civilians and killing 14 people, including seven women, state media and opposition activists said.

State news agency SANA said an "armed terrorist group" was behind the dawn attack on the village of Khatab, located 10 kilometers (6 miles) northwest of the provincial capital. SANA and Syrian state TV said 14 people were killed.

Syrian Minister of Justice Najm al-Ahmad called the attack in Khatab "a terrorist crime" and ordered a judicial inquiry.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also reported the attack, saying the rebels accused the village's Sunni Muslim inhabitants of "cooperating with the criminal regime" in Damascus. The group documents the violence in Syria through an extensive network of activists on the ground.

Sunni Muslims dominate rebel ranks and the opposition, fighting to topple President Bashar Assad's government that is predominantly made up of Alawites, a sect in Shiite Islam.

The Syrian conflict began in March 2011 as largely peaceful protests against Assad's rule. It deteriorated into an armed revolt after some opposition supporters took up arms to fight a brutal government crackdown on dissent. It became a civil war in which Islamic extremists, including foreign fighters and Syrian rebels, who have taken up hard-line al-Qaida-style ideologies, have played an increasingly prominent role among the fighters.

That has dampened the West's support for the rebellion to overthrow Assad. It has also led to a backlash within rebel ranks as armed groups turned on each other, creating a war within a war in northern and eastern Syria in which at least 7,000 people, largely rebels, have been killed since the beginning of the year.

Militants from the Islamic State group have in the past weeks captured much of eastern Syria and merged it with captured areas in neighboring Iraq - declaring a self-styled caliphate, governed by Islamic law, in the territory.

After seizing a corridor of land in the east, the group began this week advancing across northern Syria, nearing the Turkish border. On Wednesday, its fighters captured three Kurdish villages in the north after Kurdish fighters withdrew from them, the Observatory said. The report could not be independently confirmed.

The British-based group also reported that at least 20 Islamic State fighters were killed as a result of Syrian government airstrikes targeting a training base for the group in the city of Raqqa.

More than 160,000 people have been killed in the Syrian conflict and nearly a third of the population of 23 million has been displaced by fighting. A third of the dead are thought to be civilians.

Also Wednesday, members of Syria's main Western-backed opposition bloc elected a new president, the Syrian National Coalition said in a statement.

The new head of the exiled opposition, Hadi Bahra, served as chief negotiator at the failed peace talks with the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad in February in Geneva. Bahra succeeds Ahmed al-Jarba, who has already served two six-month terms - the maximum period allowed by the coalition.

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki welcomed Bahra's election. In a statement, she said the U.S. looks to Bahra "to strengthen unity amongst moderate opposition institutions."

The exiled opposition block hardly has any backing from people inside Syria. It only nominally controls nationalist-minded rebels that in many parts of the country have been overrun by Islamic extremist groups, including the Islamic State group.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • InternationalMore>>

  • 2 bombs kill at least 39 in Kaduna, north Nigeria

    2 bombs kill at least 39 in Kaduna, north Nigeria

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:23 PM EDT2014-07-23 18:23:58 GMT
    Police say at least 25 people were killed Wednesday by two bombings in the northern city of Kaduna.
    At least 39 people were killed Wednesday by two bombings in the northern city of Kaduna, according to State Police Commissioner Umar Usman Shehu.
  • UN rights chief warns of possible Gaza war crimes

    UN rights chief warns of possible Gaza war crimes

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:23 PM EDT2014-07-23 18:23:50 GMT
    The U.N.'s top human rights official has told diplomats that Israel's military and Hamas militants appear to have violated international humanitarian law and might have committed war crimes during their...
    The U.N.'s top human rights official demanded Tuesday that all sides in the two-week war in the Gaza Strip refrain from indiscriminate attacks on civilians, warning that violations may amount to war crimes.
  • Thousands attend tense pro-Gaza march in Paris

    Thousands attend tense pro-Gaza march in Paris

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 2:12 PM EDT2014-07-23 18:12:59 GMT
    Days after two banned pro-Gaza protests degenerated into violence, thousands of demonstrators were marching through Paris under the eye of hundreds of riot police, this time in a legal protest.
    Days after two banned pro-Gaza protests degenerated into violence, thousands of demonstrators were marching through Paris under the eye of hundreds of riot police, this time in a legal protest.