Bashar Assad tells opponents hours before ceasefire he intends to ‘reclaim every area from the terrorists’

President Bashar Assad with his wife

Syrian President Bashar Assad says his government is determined to “reclaim every area from the terrorists, and to rebuild” the country.

His remarks came just hours ahead of the start of a ceasefire brokered by the United States and Russia.

President Assad spoke to the state news agency SANA on the streets of Daraya, a Damascus suburb that surrendered to government authority last month.

He said: “We call on all Syrians to turn toward reconciliation.”

Earlier in Daraya, President Assad joined the prayers for the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha in a rare public appearance that sent a strong message to his opponents.

SANA says no civilians were present in the suburb, once home to nearly a quarter million people, after the last of them were evacuated as part of the surrender agreement.

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