News / Middle East

    Syria's Assad to Address Nation Sunday

    In this photo dated June 20, 2011 and released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrian President Bashar Assad delivers a speech in Damascus, Syria, at Damascus University.
    In this photo dated June 20, 2011 and released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrian President Bashar Assad delivers a speech in Damascus, Syria, at Damascus University.
    VOA News
    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is set to deliver a speech Sunday, in a rare address to his embattled nation.

    The state-run news agency SANA said Assad will "speak about the latest developments" in Syria, a country wracked by a nearly two-year civil war that analysts say has killed more than 60,000 people. The news agency did not provide further details.

    The address will be the president's first in months, and comes as intense fighting between rebels and government forces continues on the outskirts of Damascus.

    In this image from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, smoke rises due to shelling in the Damascus countryside, Jan. 2, 2013.
    In this image from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, smoke rises due to shelling in the Damascus countryside, Jan. 2, 2013.

    ​Fighting has raged for weeks near the capital, as rebels continue to press an offensive aimed at toppling the government. Forces loyal to Assad have responded with heavy artillery and deadly airstrkes.  

    The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported fighting Saturday in suburbs south of the city, with at least 10 fatalities.

    Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

    You May Like

    Escalation of Media Crackdown in Turkey Heightens Concerns

    Critics see 'a new dark age' as arrests of journalists, closures of media outlets by Erdogan government mount

    Russia Boasts of Troop Buildup on Flank, Draws Flak

    Russian military moves counter to efforts to de-escalate tensions, State Department says

    Video Iraqis Primed to March on Mosul, Foreign Minister Says

    Iraqi FM Ibrahim al-Jaafari tells VOA the campaign will meet optimistic expectations, even though US officials remain cautious

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Anonymous
    January 06, 2013 5:15 AM
    Let me guess he is going to blame the west and al qaeda for all the deaths in Syria, and that he is fighting them. He wont mention whatsoever he is sorry for thousands of civilians he killed (bombed or shot by sniper), tortured , or displaced. He likes to flip things around and blame it on anyone but himself as a way to try and mislead the people of his actual crimes. Who knows maybe he will apologize for dropping cluster bombs in neighborhoods, but I doubt it...
    In Response

    by: Our Beloved Planet !!! from: USA
    January 07, 2013 5:28 AM
    That’s all right, we quite agree with your view!
    Our dear Anonymous!
    You are really a noble person, because you not only love your nation, but also all wretched people the world over.Wishing that, all your noble dreams for your motherland and the whole world will become true soon. Love!

    by: Dangerous Consequences from: USA
    January 06, 2013 4:57 AM
    Assad has used heavy miliary measures (heavy artillery, air forces…) to attack civil Syrians. This makes very painful deaths of many innocent people in Syria.
    Therefore, he is not a legal president of Syria any more.
    At present, the best way for him is giving up power and returning it to Syrian people as soon as possible.
    If he goes on resolving Syrian problems with so wrong ways recently, surely, he will face the worst consequences, in the near future.
    In Response

    by: Anonymous
    January 06, 2013 3:06 PM
    You are absolutely correct.

    by: Anonymous
    January 05, 2013 7:51 PM
    His speeches don't matter at all anymore. After terrorizing millions of people in Syria, he is the most wanted terrorist in Syria.

    Who would ever listen to the lies that come out of that mans mouth? Him and his father have killed more innocent people than Osama Bin Laden.
    In Response

    by: Anonymous
    January 06, 2013 3:12 PM
    RE: idoon Darian

    We are not talking about the 1930s or 1967 we are talking about the killing going on now and for the past year of civilians. We are talking about the killing of a so called military against their own homeland. In the modern world this is called "Genocide" not fighting terrorists. You can try and bring up a blame game or try and say what about this or that,. but the proof is in the pudding. During his speech he was still killing people. Meenwhile he is smiling on stage trying to say that everyone he has been killing is terrorists. Do children look like terrorists to you? He drops bombs in civilian areas and thinks he can get away with it. Nobody will stand for this type of activity. His speech was before an auditorium filled with his so called military and their families. To me they are cold blooded murderers inflicting death on civilians or anyone else in their way, They have no respect for human life and even moreso in their own country. There is nothing that you can say that can balance my thinking into thinking he is some sort of good guy, or not a cold blooded murderer.
    In Response

    by: Kidoon Darian from: Los Angeles.
    January 05, 2013 10:11 PM
    Where was the world Major FORCES / Powers, all these past years? Do they just woke up?
    DO the major powers really have Syria's interest at heart?
    If so, why not ask:
    1. Ask Turkey to give back the territories they have occupied since 1930 s; The iskandaroon region; NW part of Syria.

    2. What about The Golan Heights in South WESTERN PART OF Syria? Stil occupied since 1967?

    3. What about minority interests, rigths, the ability to live in post Assad Syria? How much guarantees will there be for the minorities to live in peace, side by side the Muslims?? Who will protect them?
    Look what's goIng on in Iraq?

    4. The Western Powers must be very serious / fair and objective in dealing with th epopulation in that part fo the world.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora