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Syria widens crackdown in north and east

Syrians continue to flee towns in the north of the country as the crackdown on the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad’s one-party rule reportedly widens.  Troops pushed towards the town of Maarat al-Numaan after detaining hundreds of people in a sweep through villages near Jisr al-Shughur, the Reuters news agency reported on Tuesday, citing people who fled the area. Residents streamed south towards Aleppo and to villages in the desert to the east, while some headed to neighbouring Turkey. More than 8,000 Syrians have so far crossed the border with Turkey to escape the violence, and thousands are said to have gathered on the Syrian side of the border….