DARAMSUQ (DAMASCUS) – In what seems to the latest incident in the ongoing al-Assad family feud, the cousin of leader of the dictatorial Syrian Baath regime Bashar al-Assad, Ribal al-Assad publicly supported the idea of implementing the federal model to resolve the Syrian crisis. “Federalism does not mean dividing the country as many think,” Ribal al-Assad told Rudaw network.
The most important countries in the world today, such as the U.S., Russia, and Germany, have adopted the federal system, Ribal al-Assad said: “The implementation of this system will not change anything, but people will feel more comfortable, and in my opinion the state will be more civilized.” If implemented, the federal system would “prevent getting into the same recurring problems every five, ten or more years,” he said.
He noted that regime change must be done properly, not by the mechanism adopted by the Syrian opposition over the past years. Bashar al-Assad’s paternal cousin accused the Syrian opposition of taking up arms and getting rid of everyone that did not belong to their ideology. He added that he did not want to see the implementation of religious rule in Syria, as in the Islamic Republic of Iran, because the Syrian people want a free and democratic state.
Ribal al-Assad is currently residing in Spain and heads an organization called the Organization for Freedom and Democracy. His father Rifaat al-Assad – “the Butcher of Hama” and brother of the former Syrian dictator Hafez al-Assad – left Syria for France in 1984 with his family after a failed coup against his brother.
Article in Arabic