At least 27 people were killed in violence across Syria on Saturday as thousands mourned at a government-organized funeral for those killed in Friday’s bomb attack in the capital city of Damascus. Anti-Assad forces suspect the president’s sympathizers ordered the bombing to lend credence to the claim that the government is battling terrorists rather than suppressing dissent. —ARK
Jonathan Head at BBC News:
There have been thousands of funerals during the 10-month conflict in Syria, but few have received the kind of publicity given to the burial of 11 police officers killed in Friday’s bomb blast.
State TV showed large crowds chanting in support of President Assad as the flag-draped coffins were brought into the mosque in the Midan district of Damascus.
The attack fits the government’s narrative of the conflict - that it is confronting a terrorist conspiracy, not a mass uprising.
President Assad’s opponents say this is reason enough to suspect pro-government forces of ordering the suicide bombing, the second such attack in the capital in two weeks.