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Syria: Protesters attack US embassy compound, causing damage
BEIRUT (AP) ' Witnesses say Syrian pro-government protesters have attacked the U.S. embassy compound in Damascus, causing damage.
The witnesses said the protesters smashed windows and raised a Syrian flag on the compound on Monday. They also wrote anti-US graffiti referring to the U.S. ambassador as a "dog," the witnesses said.
The protests were over visits by the U.S. and French ambassadors last week to the opposition stronghold of Hama in central Syria.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
BEIRUT (AP) ' A witness in Syria's capital says security guards at the French Embassy have fired into the air to drive back protesters taking part in two-pronged demonstrations outside the French and American embassies in Damascus.
The protests Monday come days after the U.S. and French ambassadors visited the opposition stronghold of Hama in central Syria. The witness says crowds were not allowed to get near the U.S. Embassy.
The witness, Hiam al-Hassan, says about 300 people had gathered outside the French Embassy. Hundreds others were at the American diplomatic compound.
The protests coincide with government-organized talks in Damascus on possible political reforms after four months of unrest against the regime of President Bashar Assad.