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Jun 13, 2012, 11.04 AM IST
SYRIA-CRISIS-MONITORS:Angry crowds block Syria monitors in Haffeh, shots fired
BEIRUT (Reuters) - United Nations monitors trying to reach the Syrian town of Haffeh on Tuesday were turned back by angry crowds who threw stones and metal rods at them, and three U.N. vehicles were fired upon as they left the area, a U.N. spokeswoman said.
"U.N. observers trying to reach the town of al-Haffeh today were confronted with angry crowds that surrounded their vehicles, stopping them from proceeding any further," spokeswoman Sausan Ghosheh said in a statement.
Ghosheh said the monitors had been trying since June 7 to reach Haffeh, where activists say President Bashar al-Assad's force have been battling hundreds of rebel fighters and the United States has warned of a potential massacre.
"The crowd, who appeared to be residents of the area, then hurled stones and metal rods at the UN vehicles," Ghosheh said.
The observers turned back and as they were leaving three vehicles were fired at, she added.
The shots were fired deliberately, U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Herve Ladsous told Reuters in an interview.
(Writing by Dominic Evans; Editing by Andrew Heavens)
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