Syria’s Assad says army faces shortfall in manpower
Syria's President Bashar al-Assad - REUTERS

BEIRUT:  Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Sunday the army faced a shortfall in manpower and may have to give up positions in order to hold on to others of greater importance in its war with insurgents.

“The army is capable … Everything is available, but there is a shortfall in human capacity,” Assad said in a televised speech. He said groups fighting to topple him had received increased backing from their state sponsors in a reference to countries including Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

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