Agence France-Presse in Damascus

The 46-year-old, one of the European Union’s youngest prime ministers, is then expected to unveil his programme in a parliamentary session on Monday, before the government is put to a confidence vote in parliament on Tuesday.


The Syrian National Coalition decided to boycott talks with world powers after announcing plans to form a government to run “liberated areas” of Syria, in what analysts said was a bid to boost its credibility and win more support from the international community.

Regime troops on Saturday fended off fierce rebel onslaughts around Aleppo international airport and the adjacent Nayrab military airbase, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The Syrian regime has fired Scud missiles at rebel forces trying to oust Bashar al-Assad, a US official said Wednesday, after Arab and Western states recognised the opposition bloc as the sole representative there.

A car bomb rocked Syria’s third largest city Homs on Sunday killing 15 people, state media said, as the army hammered rebel positions around Damascus in a strategic assault.

Outbursts of fighting threatened to undermine a fragile ceasefire that took effect in Syria on Friday after Bashar al-Assad’s regime and the main rebel force agreed to down arms.

Syria peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi appealed for a truce to the conflict during a Muslim holiday this week after talks with President Bashar al-Assad, as a deadly blast rocked Damascus.