1. DICTATOR

    Assad Shows Face in Damascus

    Image #: 19092234    Syria's President Bashar al-Assad attends Eid Al Fitr prayers at al-Hamad mosque in Damascus August 19, 2012, in this handout photograph released by Syria's national news agency SANA. REUTERS/Sana/Handout (SYRIA - Tags: POLITICS RELIGION) FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS       REUTERS /SANA /LANDOV

    SANA, Reuters / Landov

    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad made a rare appearance at a Damascus mosque Sunday, one day after rumors spread that the country’s vice president had defected. The Sunday appearance is the leader’s first since a bombing in the Syrian capital in July. Vice President Farouk al-Shara, whose defection Syria has denied, was not among the officials who appeared alongside Assad Sunday. Footage of Assad’s visit to the mosque shown on state television included a sermon in which Syria was described as the target of a Western plot that would not “defeat our Islam, our ideology, and our determination in Syria.”

    At mosque.
    Read it at Reuters