Huffpost WorldPost

Syria Crisis Digest: June 30 - July 6

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Each week, HuffPost World will provide the top stories out of Syria and a recap of events in the country's uprising, as President Bashar Assad’s regime continues its bloody crackdown.

June 30 - July 6 In Review
  • More than 100 delegations attended a 'Friends of Syria' meeting to discuss the crisis. International diplomats called for new global sanctions against the Assad regime.
  • The Syrian army took control of the rebel stronghold of Khan Sheikhoun after several days of intense fighting.
  • General Robert Mood, the head of the U.N. monitor mission in Syria, said violence in the country had reached "unprecedented" levels.
  • WikiLeaks started publishing 2 million hacked emails from Syrian government officials.
  • Manaf Tlas, a Syrian general and a close friend of president Bashar Assad, defected to Turkey.
  • Dozens of people were killed when an explosion hit a funeral procession in a Damascus suburb.
  • A meeting that was supposed to unify Syria's opposition devolved into a fist-fight.
  • In an interview with a Turkish newspaper, president Bashar Assad said he regretted that Syria downed a Turkish jet on June 22. In a separate interview, Assad blamed the country's uprising on both Islamist militants from hostile Arab countries and on a Western plot.
  • Syrian army forces attacked the Damascus suburb of Douma with helicopter gunships. Activists say they saw at least 7 decaying bodies in the street.

Media Not To Miss

Human Rights Watch -- Syria Torture Centers Revealed

In a new report, Human Rights Watch identified 27 detention facilities purportedly used by Syrian intelligence agencies. The organization says that it found systematic patterns of ill-treatment and torture that clearly point to a state policy.

Check out the report, videos and interactive map on HuffPost World.

Agence France Press -- Crac Des Chevaliers Holds Out Against Assad's Troops

In 2006 it was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site, yet today the medieval castle Crac Des Chevaliers in Syria's Homs province is at the center of intense fighting between pro-government troops and members of the Free Syrian Army.

By day, regime tanks and snipers control the road leading up to the castle, Agence France Press reports. At night, opposition fighters travel in the dark to reach the village at the foot of the 12th-century castle. Most of the villagers have fled. The ones who remain live without electricity and gas. They endure constant shelling. "We are refugees in our own town," a woman tells AFP.

Watch AFP's full report on YouTube.

The Telegraph -- Amateur footage shows Syrian security forces giving electric shocks to protesters