Syria’s Assad says minority tried to spark chaos

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Wednesday that a minority of people had tried to “spark chaos” in the southern city of Deraa, center of recent protests, but that they would be thwarted by the majority.

He also said that clear instructions had been issued to security forces not to harm anyone during the protests, in which at least 61 people have died.

He was addressing parliament in his first public comments since protests erupted in Deraa nearly two weeks ago and spread to other cities.

Syria’s Assad says minority tried to spark chaos