Press TV has conducted an interview with Hisham Jaber of the Center for Middle East Studies from Beirut over recent advancements by the Syrian troops against foreign-backed insurgents and the geo-political changes affecting Syria.
What follows is a rough transcription of the interview.
Press TV: I am looking at the list of advancements by the army, which is in series of advancements that has been made recently. By the time Geneva 2 comes around, I do not think there is anything for Syria and the opposition to discuss because it sounds like the country is going to be in full control of the Syrian army?
Jaber: I think the Syrian army made its decision based on the political decision to take over Homs and Hama before the battle of Aleppo started.
The Syrian army made very good and positive advanced steps inside Homs, trying at the same time to minimize the victims and damage among the civilians and the damage in the whole city.
The Syrian army controlled already the eastern part of Homs, but also fighting in Khaldiyeh, which is decisive; but the insurgents are still inside the city, the down town part of the city and two major towns, which are in the northeast of Homs – al-Raston and Telbiseh.
Nobody knows how long it will take the battle of Homs, but it is very decisive, maybe one week, maybe two weeks, may be less, may be more; but as I said they are trying to fight in a way not to destroy the whole cities and to minimize the damage among the civilians.
Also in Homs, do not forget that it has the oldest military academy. It is very important; it is the capital of the central region in Syria. Also we go back to Hama – the matter of Hama, which started a few days ago. When the Syrian Army will take over those cities we can start to talk about Aleppo in which I think it will be the most important battle. But in general, the Syrian army made a lot of success on the battlefield.
Also we do not have to forget the political scene in the region – what is going on in the region, you know: First of all Turkey, which was a most hostile and aggressive country against the Syrian regime – Turkey now I think is busy solving domestic problems. They changed in Qatar also. And what happened yesterday in Egypt when the regime of Mohamed Morsi was very hostile and very aggressive and cut the relations with Syria.
Now in Qatar, I think they….will minimize and decrease its involvement in Syria. All of the above is in the favor of the Syrian regime.