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Report: Russia considers Assad asylum

Dec. 25, 2011 9:45 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 28, 2011 9:40 P.M.)
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) -- The vice president of Syria secretly visited Moscow on Dec. 16 to discuss the possibility Russia would grant President Bashar Assad and his family political asylum, an Israeli newspaper reports.

Quoting Israeli sources, the Hebrew-language daily Maariv reported Sunday that Farouq Al-Shara met with foreign minister Sergi Lavarov and proposed that al-Shara temporarily replace Assad after he leaves Damascus for Moscow until elections are held.

Sources in the Kremlin, meanwhile, confirmed al-Shara's visit, Maariv reported, but they provided no details. Russia, added Maariv, does not want to abandon Assad and his regime which it considers an ally.

Additionally, Russia opposes any military action by the international community similar to that in Libya. “We have seen what happened in Libya. The situation there is too far from being stable, and we don’t want that to be repeated in Syria,” Lavarov has said, according to Maariv.

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