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Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Regime Forces Try to Recapture Damascus Suburb

Footage from the Damascus suburb of Darayya last month

See also EA Special: 10 Predictions for 2013 --- Assad Gone, an Angry Middle East, and Little Change on "Human Rights"
Monday's Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: On Verge of "Hell" or "Sacred Birth"?

2035 GMT: Bahrain. Claimed footage of police throwing tear gas canister near a 4 year-old child in Jirdab village:

1855 GMT: Syria. The Local Coordination Committees reports that 108 people have been killed today, including 41 in Hama Province and 22 in Damascus and its suburbs.

The LCC claims that, of the total, 16 are children and six are women.

1735 GMT: Egypt. The Public Prosecutor will investigate a complaint agianst Bassem Youssef, a television satirist who poked fun at President Mursi.

Youssef rose to fame following the uprising against the Mubarak regime with an online programme with similarities to Jon Stewart's Daily Show in the US.

In the version now on television, Youssef has mocked Morsi's repeated use of "love" in his speeches with a love song, holding a red pillow with the President's face printed on it.

An Islamist lawyer has accused Youssef of "insulting" Morsi and "undermining his standing".

1715 GMT: Syria. A large anti-regime demonstration took place today in Kafarnbouda near Hama:

1645 GMT: Syria. Residents and activists report that regime forces have shelled eastern and southern suburbs of Damascus today, as well as parts of central Homs.

1435 GMT: Iraq. Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, leader of a key political bloc, has warned of further unrest if the demands of Sunni protesters are not heeded: "Beware of the Arab Spring in Iraq".

Tens of thousands of demonstrators, most of them Sunni, have marched and blocked roads in the last week over discrimination and alleged Government suppression of the religious minority.

Sadr told reporters in the Shiite holy city of Najaf that the demonstrators have the right to protest as long as they are peaceful. He said that al-Maliki “bears full responsibility” for the discontent.

The Sadrists backed al-Maliki following elections in 2010, then last year joined Iraq’s minority Sunni Arabs and Kurds in calling for the Prime Minister to resign. The bloc holds 40 seats in parliament and retain control of several government ministries.

1345 GMT: Syria. Aleppo International Airport has been temporarily closed because of nearby fighting.

"There have been continued attempts by opposition militants to target civilian aircraft, which could cause a humanitarian disaster," an airport official asserted. He said the airport would be closed for a "very short period of time" while the army tried to regain control of surrounding areas.

Syria's national airline began cancellation of some flights to the airport on Sunday.

0955 GMT: UAE. Security forces have arrested more than 10 members of an Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood cell, the daily Al Khaleej has reported.

Sources claimed that the cell's activities were monitored and investigated for years, with members holding secret meetings and recruiting Egyptians residing in the UAE to join the Brotherhood.

The UAE, in a crackdown on dissent, has arrested more than 60 activists since March. Most are connected with the Al Islah movement.

0735 GMT: Syria. In the one of the largest military operations in months near the capital, regime forces tried to reclaim the Damascus suburb of Darayya on Monday.

Troops backed by tanks and other armoured vehicles moved after days of shelling on Darayya, where hundreds were killed in August in a previous assault.

The regime was unable to hold the suburb, however, and insurgents have used its strategic locations to fire on Syrian forces and a Presidential complex.

The Free Syrian Army claims that it held back Tuesday's attack, destroying 11 tanks and two BMP armoured vehicles.

The Local Coordination Committees report that 119 people were killed across Syria on Tuesday, including 49 in Damascus and its suburbs and 32 in Aleppo Province.

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