A fierce battle continued over the course of Tuesday as Libyan government artillery pounded the besieged city of Misurata and further shelling targeted the cities of Zintan and Ajdabiya.
Pro-democracy fighters said they had beaten back two offensives by troops loyal to longterm leader Muammar Gaddafi in Misurata, 200km east of capital Tripoli.
“There was heavy fighting in Tripoli Street and the rebels held their positions. Also, very intense fighting occurred on the eastern side of Misurata on the Nak el Theqeel road. The rebels repelled the attack,” a spokesman who identified himself as Mohamad Abu Shaara told Reuters by telephone.
Syrian security forces have fired upon people in the village of Bayda, near the town of Baniyas in the country’s northeast, injuring at least one person, witnesses have told Al Jazeera.
On Sunday, security forces in Baniyas killed at least four pro-reform protesters and left another 17 wounded, human rights groups have said.
“Security forces and armed men are firing machine guns indiscriminately at [Bayda],” a witness said on Tuesday.
“The gunfire against Bayda is intense like the rain. At least one person was injured,” another witness said, describing the violence in the village, which is 10km south of Baniyas.
“What we are hearing from residents [in Bayda] is that there has been a campaign of arrests, those who have been detained are taken to the main square … and eyewitnesses say they are being brutally beaten,” reported Al Jazeera’s Rula Amin from Damascus.
“In Baniyas … the city is still sealed, tension is very high … and [there is a] heavy security presence.”
“The goal of the attack is probably the arrest of Anas al-Shukri [one of the leaders of the opposition movement],” a human rights activist, who wished to remain anonymous, said.
Washington (CNN) – It has been 150 years since the Civil War began with the first shots at Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, and in some respects views of the Confederacy and the role that slavery played in the events of 1861 still divide the public, according to a new national poll.
In the CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll released Tuesday, roughly one in four Americans said they sympathize more with the Confederacy than the Union, a figure that rises to nearly four in ten among white Southerners.
When asked the reason behind the Civil War, whether it was fought over slavery or states’ rights, 52 percent of all Americas said the leaders of the Confederacy seceded to keep slavery legal in their state, but a sizeable 42 percent minority said slavery was not the main reason why those states seceded.
“The results of that question show that there are still racial, political and geographic divisions over the Civil War that still exists a century and a half later,” CNN Polling Director Holland Keating said.
When broken down by political party, most Democrats said southern states seceded over slavery, independents were split and most Republicans said slavery was not the main reason that Confederate states left the Union.
Republicans were also most likely to say they admired the leaders of the southern states during the Civil War, with eight in 10 Republicans expressing admiration for the leaders in the South, virtually identical to the 79 percent of Republicans who admired the northern leaders during the Civil War.
The survey polled 824 adults via telephone between April 9 and April 10. The poll had a sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
–CNN Associate Producer Gabriella Schwarz contributed to this report