Syrian troops continued to pound the city of Hama Saturday, stretching out the violent assault to nearly a week. President Bashar al-Assad ordered troops to invade the city, fearing a growing uprising would gain too much momentum. The Middle East's own oil-rich states have called for the "immediate end" of the crackdown. In a public statement, the six Gulf Cooperation Council countries—Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates—urged Syrian leaders to “resort to wisdom and introducing serious and necessary reforms that would protect the rights and dignity of the people, and meet their aspirations." Nearly 200 have been killed since last Sunday. Activists have reported bodies strewn across the streets and many left bleeding to death, unable to reach a hospital. Families have been forced to bury the dead in public parks or private gardens.
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