ISTANBUL, Nov 11 (Reuters) – Syria’s Western-backed opposition agreed on Monday to attend planned peace talks in Geneva but said President Bashar al-Assad could play no part in a transitional government aimed at ending the 2-1/2-year-old civil war.
Bashar Hafez al-Assad (born 11 September 1965) is the President of Syria, General Secretary of the Ba’ath Party and Regional Secretary of the party’s branch in Syria.
He has served as President since 2000, when he succeeded his father, Hafez al-Assad, who led Syria for 30 years until his death.
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Assad himself, after months of steady gains on the battlefield, has given no suggestion that he is ready to step down and his ministers have repeatedly said that the government would not show up in Geneva simply to surrender power.
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