Syria Army Deserter Claims He Was Ordered To Shoot Protesters (VIDEO)

07/06/2011 12:12 pm ET | Updated Sep 05, 2011

A man claiming to be a Syrian army deserter has come forward with claims that he defected after being repeatedly assigned to open fire on unarmed civilians protesting against the government.

As CNN is reporting, the 21-year-old man, who worked in an ice cream factory prior to being drafted last December, deserted and fled Syria after serving as a sniper in the 14th Division of the Syrian army. The man, who asked not to be identified, is currently in hiding in Istanbul while applying for asylum as a refugee.

Though CNN could not independently verify the man's claims, they seem to be in line with protester group allegations, as well as other defector's testimonies. "There were protests and chanting," he said. "Suddenly our officer gave us the order to shoot at the people. It didn't matter how many would be killed; the important thing was for the protest to be dispersed."

Watch CNN's interview with the anonymous defector below: