Syria's Assad calls for mobilisation in first speech for months
BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad made his first public appearance in months on Sunday, calling for a "full national mobilisation" to fight against rebels he described as al Qaeda terrorists.
"We meet today and suffering is overwhelming Syrian land. There is no place for joy while security and stability are absent on the streets of our country," Assad said in a speech at the opera house in central Damascus. "The nation is for all and we all must protect it."
The remarks were his first in public since a Russian television interview in November when he pledged to stay in Syria and fight to the death if necessary. A 21-month uprising against Assad has become a civil war that the United Nations says has killed 60,000 people.
(Reporting by Erika Solomon; Writing by Peter Graff)
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this
Thousands of people queued on Wednesday to say goodbye to Nelson Mandela, whose body lay in state in Pretoria in the building where the anti-apartheid hero was inaugurated in 1994 as South Africa's first black president. Full Article
Amount of dirty money leaving developing world jumped 14 pct in 2011 - report. Full Article
U.S., Britain suspend aid to north Syria after Islamists seize weapons store. Full Article