During his 1st visit to East Ghouta in several years, Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad says that he prides himself on the efforts of the Syrian soldiers who have served under him.
Sunday, March 18th, state-run Syrian TV broadcast the Syrian president surrounded by soldiers riding atop military vehicles in an unspecified part of East Ghouta, then broadcast a speech given by the president before a military audience.
‘The inhabitants of Damascus are more than grateful (for all of your service) and perhaps one day will tell their children years from now of how you saved the capital,’ said Assad during the broadcast.
‘We’re all proud of each and every one of you. You’re heroes. The war is bigger than Syria. You’re all fighting for the whole world. With every missile & bullet fired to kill a terrorist, you changed the balance of the world. Every step changed the map of the world,’ said Assad.
The Syrian soldiers sang back to President Assad with the lyrics ‘We sacrifice our souls and our blood for you.’
According to Syrian state media, Syrian rebel groups have held East Ghouta since 2012, but a recent, comprehensive offensive allowed Syria to regain control of 80% of the former rebel territory. At the same time, reports of 1400 civilians having been killed in connection with the Syrian offensive have been registered by opposing factions.
The U.N. and several international actors have expressed their dismay & concern over how Assad’s forces have handled the war.
© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today