Syrian President Bashar al-Assad rejected the opposition movement in Syria as "enemies of the people, the enemies of God" and branded them "puppets" created by the West, in a rare public address in Damascus.
The US State Department dismissed a speech by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus as a meaningless attempt to retain power in his war-torn country and urged him to step down.
Assad's speech "is yet another attempt by the regime to cling to power and does nothing to advance the Syrian people's goal of a political transition," said State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland in a statement.
She added: "His initiative is detached from reality, undermines the efforts of Joint Special Representative Lakhdar Brahimi, and would only allow the regime to further perpetuate its bloody oppression of the Syrian people."
Ahmet Davutoglu, the Turkish Foreign Minister accused the Syrian President of making "empty promises" of peace after Mr al-Assad called on his people to rise up against the rebels.
His remarks are just repetitions of what he's said all along. They are the same promises he made to us. As Assad no longer has the representative authority over the Syrian people, his words have lost persuasiveness. A transition period needs to be completed swiftly through talks with representatives of the Syrian nation.
President Assad rejected the opposition movement in Syria as "enemies of the people, the enemies of God" and branded them "puppets" created by the West.
Eventually they resorted to terrorism to terrorise the people. They call it a revolution, but it has nothing to do with revolution. That would need thinkers and be based on an idea. It needs leadership - who is the leader of this revolution?