Posted: 10:28a.m. IST, August 19, 2012
Damascus, Aug. 19 (ANI): Syria has denied reports that the country's vice-president Farouq al-Shara has defected.
Syrian rebels had claimed that Farouq al-Shara has abandoned the regime, which would be the highest-level defection since the conflict erupted.
According to the Telegraph, state-run television in Damascus issued a statement from the office of the vice president saying that he has never at any moment thought of leaving the homeland to whatever direction.
According to the report, leaders of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) said it had lost contact with rebel commandos who were trying to help the vice-president flee the country.
Farouq al-Sharaa did defect, but we were trying to get him through to Jordan, the report quoted FSA spokesman Louai Miqdad, as saying
Farouq al-Sharaa is the most senior Sunni member of President Bashar al-Assad's Government.
He has been serving as the country's vice president since 2006 and previously served for 20 years as foreign minister, the report added. (ANI)