Syrian Forces Quell Protests

Syrian security forces have continued to counter protests with violence, killing seven civilians in Kassir, a town in the province of Homs. Communication and electricity were reportedly shut off. President Bashar al-Assad also ordered the mass arrests of those opposing his rule. The violence comes only a day after the U.S. Treasury imposed sanctions to stifle Assad's financial resources, targeting Syria's main commercial bank and cell-phone carrier. Recent reports also say that the Army has gained control of Deir al-Zour near the Iraq border, a move that has drawn condemnation from countries across the world, including nearby Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Kuwait, who have recalled their ambassadors from Damascus.