Plainclothes Syrian security men broke up an apparently spontaneous demonstration by dozens of people after Friday prayers at the main mosque in Damascus, Agence France Presse reporters witnessed.
"God is greatest," a crowd inside the men's section of the Omayyad mosque started chanting in crescendo after prayers.
Dozens of plainclothes policemen showed up at the mosque with batons and detained at least two people, dragging one of them through the ground.
A counter demonstration in support of the President Bashar al-Assad gathered at least 200 people, some of them carrying portraits of his late father and predecessor Hafez al-Assad.
Impromptu protests have erupted for three days in a row in the Old City of Damascus.
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