WORLD IN BRIEF: Witness: Hama people being slaughtered

Witness: Hama people being slaughtered

BEIRUT -- The flashpoint Syrian city of Hama endured a fifth day under military siege Thursday, with a resident saying people were being ''slaughtered like sheep'' in the streets and families were burying their dead in home gardens or roadsides rather than risk a trip to a cemetery.

Food supplies grew short and residents shared bread, while phones, electricity and Internet were cut off or severely hampered.

There was no official count of the dead. One resident said around 250 people have been killed since Sunday. And a rights group that tracks death tallies reported up to 30 people were killed in Hama on Wednesday alone. The tolls could not be verified because of the difficulty reaching residents and hospital officials in the besieged city, where journalists are barred as they are throughout Syria.

Emily fizzles after soaking Haiti, DomRep

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- Tropical Storm Emily broke apart Thursday and became a wet low pressure system after dumping rains over Haiti and the southwestern corner of the Dominican Republic, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

The center said all hurricane watches and warnings had been canceled but heavy rains were continuing to fall over the island of Hispaniola, which is shared by the two countries. Flooding and mudslides were still a threat.

Emily dropped more than 5 inches round the southwestern Dominican city of Barahona, prompting the government to order the evacuation of more than 5,000 people.

Mexico town's police quit after attack

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico -- An entire 20-man police force resigned in a northern Mexican town after a series of attacks that killed the police chief and five officers over the last three months, state officials said Thursday.

The officers' resignation Thursday left the 13,000 people of Ascension without local police services, Chihuahua state chief prosecutor Carlos Manuel Salas said. State and federal police have moved in to take over police work, he said.

The mass resignation appeared to be connected to a Tuesday attack by gunmen that killed three of the town's officers, Salas said.