This, from The Independent:
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has recruited a brigade of women to man checkpoints and carry out security operations as he attempts to free up soldiers in his beleaguered army to fight the rebels.
Dressed in fatigues and armed with Kalashnikov assault rifles, the female recruits – the “Lionesses for National Defence” – are part of a new paramilitary force. They have already been deployed in Homs, where they have been spotted guarding areas where residents still largely support the regime. Videos from both opposition and pro-government sites purport to show members of the all-female unit in action.
A spokesperson from the Syrian opposition claims that placing weapons in the hands of women is simply a way to get the Free Syrian Army to kill women, which would then enflame opinions against the rebel cause.