BEIRUT — Tens of thousands of Syrians shouting "We want freedom!" carried slain protesters through the streets Saturday as opposition figures meeting in Turkey called for a united front to bring down the 40-year ruling dynasty of the Assad family.
Syrian security forces killed at least 28 people Friday during the largest protests since the uprising began more than four months ago, activists said. Hundreds of thousands of people poured into the streets nationwide, but they were met with gunfire and tear gas.
"The regime has kidnapped the entire state, and we want it back," said Haitham al-Maleh, one of Syria's most prominent dissidents, who led Saturday's opposition conference in Istanbul.
Syria's crackdown on the protests has led to international condemnation and sanctions. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Saturday that President Bashar Assad had dashed hopes of reform.
Rupert Murdoch apologizes to U.K.
LONDON —"We are sorry," the full-page newspaper ad began Saturday, as Rupert Murdoch tried to halt a phone-hacking scandal that has claimed two of his top executives with a gesture of atonement and promises to right the wrongs committed by his now-shuttered tabloid, News of the World.
Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative-led government and the London police, meanwhile, faced increasing questions over their close relationship with Murdoch's media empire.
Cameron was feeling the heat Saturday after government records showed that Murdoch executives have held 26 meetings with him in since he was elected in May 2010.
Murdoch is struggling to contain the crisis.