FSA chief urges Alawites to abandon Assad’s ‘sinking ship’

Brigadier General Abdel Ilah al-Bashir says the FSA is only alternative to the Syrian regime

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Free Syrian Army Chie Brigadier General Abdel Ilah al-Bashir called on Monday on members of the Syrian regime from the Alawite sect to abandon the “sinking ship.”

“We call on whoever has remained in the Syrian army, especially our families from the Alawite sect to leave that sinking ship, in which they were used as fuel, and join the frontlines and assume their leading positions which await them in the Free Syrian Army lines,” Gen. Bashir told Al Arabiya News Channel.

"After proving its moderation and patriotism, the Free Syrian Army is the only option for the Syrian people's salvation, regardless of their affiliations and sects," Gen. Bashir added.

Amid international talk about a political solution to the crisis in Syria, the Foreign Minister Walid al-Mualem said on Monday that President Bashar al-Assad's regime would not hold talks with the opposition, saying it lacked credibility and follows "the orders of its Western masters."

“We are open to a political solution in Syria, with a real opposition ... that does not depend on the outside,” he said, according to AFP.

The West is stepping up aid to the moderate Syrian opposition, including military training to be provided by the United States to put more rebel forces on the ground to confront the jihadists.

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