Saudi King Recalls Ambassador to Syria Over Protester Deaths

Abdallah bin Abdel Aziz calls upon Damascus to quickly implement serious reforms.

Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdel Aziz announced late Sunday that he would recall the kingdom's his from Syria for "consultations" and called on Damascus to implement swift and all-out reforms.

"What is taking place in Syria is unacceptable," the king said in a statement broadcast on late-night state television. "Syria's future is between two options: wisdom or chaos," he said, adding, "The killing machine and bloodshed must be stopped."

saudi king - AP - November 16 2010
Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud AP

At least 80 people were killed Sunday in attacks by the Syrian army in the cities of Deir al-Zour and Homs, according to the opposition group Federation of the Local coordination Committees of the Syrian Revolution.

The Syrian government is under mounting international pressure to halt a deadly crackdown on pro-democracy protests.

More than 1,650 people and 390 security personnel have been killed in the protests since they began in mid-March, Syrian human rights groups say.