A fierce battle for a hilltop Christian monastery north of Damascus has raised fears the war in Syria is turning into a clash of religions.
They emerged from the shadows of a Syrian street, hands raised and stripped to the waist. But this wasn't a trap - these were defectors.
Two young Syrian children, 10 and eight, tell ITV News of the moment an air strike destroyed their home and left them orphaned.
Syrians living in rebel-held areas of the capital are manufacturing their own gas masks in case the area comes under another chemical attack like that of 21 August.
A home in the Ghouta region of Damascus has been converted into makeshift factory turning out 200-300 masks each day. Volunteers then distribute them to local residents.
"With our limited resources we were able to produce this protective mask that is made of cotton, coal, wax, and other similar material. God willing this mask will be effective and protect people," said one volunteer called Ibrahim Shami.
They hope that the masks, which are entirely funded by local donations, will be effective enough to give people time to escape any future attack.
Members of US Congress are to be shown a 13-minute video compilation of CIA-verified footage showing the victims of a chemical attack on eastern Damascas.
Senate Intelligence Committee chairwoman Dianne Feinstein said her committee was shown the "grim and ghoulish" video yesterday.
The 13-minute video is available to watch on senate.gov but viewers are advised that the footage contains some extremely distressing scenes.
Assad's CBS interview is unlikely to make any difference among the people and policymakers in America.
Much more significant here is the 13 CIA-verified videos, which have just been released, of the chemicals weapons attack on the outskirts of Damascus.
Some of those are extremely harrowing and today those videos are being shown to all members of Congress. That is much more likely to sway opinion.
It is in many ways the secret weapon of the lobbying effort now underway by the White House.
I think there is a growing belief, certainly among the regime, that a military that a strike now looks likely, they watch international television, they can see the mood in congress.
I spoke to one Syrian commander, who didn't give anything way, but he said things are being hidden and when it comes to it, we will be hiding too.