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Syrian minister: No one can defeat Syria

Updated: 2012-11-13 11:22
( Xinhua)

DAMASCUS - Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi said Monday that "no power in the world could defeat Syria", amid media reports about the army's "cleansing" of insurgents in the northern Idlib province and clashes elsewhere in the country.

"No power in the whole world can defeat Syria thanks to its people and army," al-Zoubi said during a lecture at Tishreen University, noting that "Syria's enemies inside and abroad don't know that our connection to our country is eternal."

The minister noted that the Syrian opposition are not the country's enemies "in principle," but "opponents in political work".

"We disagree with them for Syria, not against Syria," he added.

Al-Zoubi made the remarks as Syrian official media reported the army's operations across the country on Monday.

The Syrian army conducted a number of operations in the suburbs of Idlib, and managed to destroy many of the armed rebels' hideouts and to restore control over four villages in Jisr al-Shughour area in Idlib, the state-run SANA news agency said.

In the capital Damascus, clashes have been concentrated in the suburbs of Tadamun, Zamalka and Harasta, as SANA said Harasta is almost clean of insurgency and will soon be declared safe.

In the northern province of Aleppo, an official source slammed "unfounded" media reports that the rebels have taken control over an air force battalion in Handarat area.

The unnamed source said a number of "terrorists" attacked the battalion earlier in the day, adding that they were confronted by the battalion's soldiers, who killed and injured many of the assailants and forced the rest to flee the area.