The toll would make Friday the deadliest single day of protests in the country since the anti-government uprising began in March.
Witnesses and activists say security forces used live ammunition and tear gas on protesters, who poured onto the streets after Friday prayers and called for President Bashar al-Assad's immediate departure.
(Video: Al Jazeera English )
The deaths were reported in areas including the southern Daraa region, the central city of Homs and communities near the capital, Damascus.
In Washington, U.S. President Barack Obama condemned the latest use of force and said the Syrian government's "outrageous'' use of violence against the protesters must "end now.''
Allahpundit in HotAir analyzes:
Israel, despite its antipathy to the Assad clan, is in no hurry to see Bashar go for fear of what will succeed him. There’s a reason why Obama’s statement quoted above, despite its indignation, never quite gets around to calling for Assad’s ouster. Things can get worse. (That’s one of the fears about the Libyan rebels, no?)