Syrian footballer raises revolution flag in official match

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More than 40,000 people have been killed in Syria since violence broke out against the rule of President Bashar al-Assad in March 2011.

The Syrians reached the final after drawing with Iraq and coming from behind to beat Jordan in the group stages.

They then edge Bahrain 3-2 on penalties when their semi-final finished 1-1 after extra time.

In one of the matches, a fan stormed in the pitch carrying the opposition flag, prompting fans to start chanting for the revolution. Kuwaiti security forces prevented a demonstration outside the stadium against the regime of Bashar al-Assad.

The Syrian official state TV briefly suspended the broadcast of the match.

Syria had twice previously finished as runners-up in the tournament, in the inaugural edition in 2000 and again four years later, both times losing to Iran.

Syria are ranked 144th by world governing body FIFA and have never qualified for a World Cup but have made the Asian Cup finals on five occasions, most recently last year.

They begin the qualifiers for the 2015 Asian Cup in February and will play home matches against Singapore, Jordan and Oman in Iran. The top two teams from the group will compete in the finals in Australia.

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