Syria Live Blog
Al Jazeera exclusive: Statement from Syrian ambassador to Iraq, confirming resignation
Syria's ambassador to Iraq has given Al Jazeera an exclusive statement confirming that he has defected in protest at the military crackdown by Assad's forces against a 16-month uprising.
Nawaf al-Fares, who is said to have close ties to Syrian security, is the first senior diplomat to quit the embattled government. There has been no comment from Damascus or Baghdad. Here's what he told Al Jazeera tonight:
I announced my resignation as Syrian ambassador to Iraq as I also declare my defection from the Syrian Baath party.
I urge all honest members of this party to follow my path because the regime has turned it to an instrument to kill people and their aspiration to freedom.
I also declare from this moment that I have joined the ranks of the revolution, a place where I should be at this critical time which Syria is going through.