Diplomat: Assad rejects proposals to step down
A senior European diplomat was quoted as saying on Sunday by a Kuwaiti newspaper that "Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has lost the ability to control the course of events in his country and was no longer able to deal rationally and logically with the dangers that threaten his collapse." The source added that Assad still believes he can still able to crash the popular uprising against him and to restore grip on the internal situation as well as the regional issues.
The source said that "Assad is detached from reality. He does not realize and understand what is going on around him and in the region." The source conveyed that the deteriorating situation in Syria "led Assad to escalate the confrontation and actions."
The source stressed that Assad sent several messages through intermediaries, rejecting any plan which includes him or his family giving up powers, including a Russian proposal similar to the the Gulf initiative to end the crisis in Yemen. According to the source, Assad insists that "what is happening in his country is not a popular revolution to achieve freedoms, democracy and political pluralism, but an armed rebellion against the legitimate regime. "
The source stressed that the Syrian crisis is the most important episode in the struggle for the future of the Middle East between the moderate Arab states and the Syrian-Iranian axis. The downfall of Assad may create a new balance in the region and stop the growing influence by Iran.