Security forces “opened fire with bullets and tear gas on the detainees at Aleppo central prison in response to a peaceful sit-in organised by prisoners because of the great injustice of which they are victims,” the Syrian National Council said in a statement.
“Eight people were martyred and a fire broke out inside the prison.”
The statement said regime forces had fired on the prison from helicopters as the fire raged inside, preventing help from arriving at the facility.
The mutiny is the second in less than a week in Syria, after a similar incident in the central prison in the southern city of Homs.
The Free Syrian Army warned that the embattled regime of Bashar al-Assad had moved chemical weapons to airports on Syria’s borders, a day after the regime warned it could use them if attacked by an outside force.
“We in the joint command of the Free Syrian Army inside the country know very well the locations and positions of these weapons,” a statement from the FSA said.
“We also reveal that Assad has transferred some of these weapons and equipment for mixing chemical components to airports on the border.”
The statement said the weapons had been moved in a bid to pressure the international community, much of which has called for Assad to step aside in the face of a 16-month uprising against his rule.
“According to our information, the regime began moving its stocks of weapons of mass destruction several months ago … with the goal of putting pressure on the region and the international community,” the FSA said.
On the political front, the opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) said on Tuesday it would be willing to accept a transition led temporarily by a member of the regime if Assad steps aside, after armed rebels suffered setbacks in their bid to overrun Damascus.
“We would agree to the departure of Assad and the transfer of his powers to a regime figure, who would lead a transitional period like what happened in Yemen,” SNC spokesman George Sabra told AFP.
Asked about who might lead such a transition, Sabra said “Syria has patriotic figures both in the regime and among officers in the Syrian army who could take such a role.”
He did not elaborate.