Breaking News Bar
updated: 12/17/2012 9:50 AM

Syrian vice president says army can't win

hello
Success - Article sent! close
  • A mosaic of Hafez Al Assad is seen after being shot at by FSA soldiers after heavy clashes with government forces at a military academy besieged by the rebels in Tal Sheer, Syria, Sunday.

      A mosaic of Hafez Al Assad is seen after being shot at by FSA soldiers after heavy clashes with government forces at a military academy besieged by the rebels in Tal Sheer, Syria, Sunday.
    Associated Press

 
Associated Press

BEIRUT -- Syria's longtime vice president said the army cannot defeat the rebels fighting to topple the regime, the first admission by a top government official that a victory by President Bashar Assad is unlikely.

In an interview with Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar published on Monday, Farouk al-Sharaa offered the unusually bleak public assessment of the civil war.

Order Reprint Print Article
 
Interested in reusing this article?
Custom reprints are a powerful and strategic way to share your article with customers, employees and prospects.
The YGS Group provides digital and printed reprint services for Daily Herald. Complete the form to the right and a reprint consultant will contact you to discuss how you can reuse this article.
Need more information about reprints? Visit our Reprints Section for more details.

Contact information ( * required )

Success - request sent close

"All these opposition forces can only conclude the battle to topple the regime if their goal is to push the country into chaos a cycle of violence that has no end," al-Sharaa said in the interview. "I don't see that what the security forces and army units are doing will lead to a definitive victory."

Syrian rebels have made significant tactical advances in the past weeks, capturing air bases and military installations near Syria's largest city of Aleppo and in the capital Damascus. On Sunday, an Islamist faction took an infantry base in Aleppo, a second army base that was captured from the troops in the northern city in a week.

Also, Western nations are talking of stepped up aid to the rebels. And there were mixed messages last week from Assad's key international ally Russia, which tried to backpedal after a top diplomat said Assad is losing control of his country.

Al-Alkhbar said al-Sharaa was speaking in Damascus.

The Syrian uprising started in March 2011 as peaceful protests but quickly turned into a civil war after the government's brutal crackdown on dissent. Activists say more than 40,000 people have been killed as the civil war took increasing sectarian overtones.

Most rebels are members of Syria's Sunni Muslim majority while the Assad regime is dominated by Alawites, an offshoot group of Shiite Islam.

Share this page
Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.
    help here