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Bahrain has faced the Gulf’s largest uprisings since the start of the Arab Spring. Its larger Gulf neighbors, led by Saudi Arabia, sent in additional security forces to help Bahraini authorities put down widespread street protests under special emergency powers earlier this year.

Kuwait also recalled its ambassador to Syria, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheik Mohammad Sabah al-Salem Al Sabah said in a brief statement carried by the state news agency KUNA. He said Gulf foreign ministers planned to meet soon to discuss the situation in Syria.

Despite Damascus’ increasing diplomatic isolation, the regime has shown no signs of scaling back its crackdown.

Security forces killed at least three people during a funeral Monday in Daraa, according to the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The group said among those killed was prominent activist Maan al-Odat, brother of the well-known Paris-based Syrian human rights activist Haitham Manaa.

Syria-based rights activist Mustafa Osso said seven people were killed in Daraa. It was not immediately possible to reconcile the discrepancy.

In Deir el-Zour, about 280 miles (450 kilometers) east of the capital Damascus, machine-gun fire and artillery blasts resumed early Monday, according to the Local Coordinating Committees, which help organize the protests and track the uprising.

Deir el-Zour is in an oil-rich but largely impoverished region of Syria known for its well-armed clans and tribes whose ties extend across eastern Syrian and into Iraq.

Syrian troops also stormed Maaret al-Numan in the northern province of Idlib at dawn, activists said.

At least 300 people have died in the past week, the bloodiest in the five-month uprising against Assad’s authoritarian rule. More than 1,700 people have been killed since March, according to activists and human rights groups.

The central city of Hama had been the focus of the crackdown for most of the week. Reporters were taken on a tour of the government-run Hama National Hospital on Sunday night and shown the remains of 16 people, some decomposing.

On Monday, Syria’s state-run news agency SANA, said the army began withdrawing from Hama as life returned to normal in the city. It said the army’s operation in the city aimed to “protect civilians.”

Condemnation of the Syrian government spread to the Internet, where the hacking group known as Anonymous claimed credit for vandalizing the Syrian military’s website. The site quickly became unavailable, but screenshots circulated online showed the group’s trademark headless suit and a message addressed to the Syrian people saying that “the world stands with you against the brutal regime.”

Assad has shrugged off months of criticism and sanctions, blaming armed gangs for the violence while offering reform measures that have failed to placate the protesters demanding sweeping changes.

Associated Press writers Zeina Karam in Beirut, Raphael G. Satter in London and Adam Schreck in Dubai, United Arab Emirates contributed to this report.