'Gunmen kill senior Syrian military official'

State media reports "terrorist group" kills Brig.-Gen. Issa al-Khouli in Damascus; Dichter: Israel must prepare for Alawite refugees.

By REUTERS, JPOST.COM STAFF
February 11, 2012 16:46
1 minute read.
Free Syria Army member with an assault rifle

Free Syria Army member with an assault rifle 390 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS/Amateur video)

Gunmen shot dead a senior Syrian military doctor outside his home in northern Damascus on Saturday, the state news agency SANA said.

It said "an armed terrorist group" killed Brigadier-General Issa al-Khouli, who it described as a doctor and hospital director, in the Rukneddine district of the Syrian capital.

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Khouli was the most senior official to be reported killed in Damascus since the start of an 11-month-old uprising against President Bashar Assad.

Most of the violence has been outside the two main cities of Damascus and Aleppo, but rebel fighters briefly seized control of Damascus suburbs last month and two car bombs killed 28 people in Aleppo on Friday.

Meanwhile on Saturday, MK Avi Dichter (Kadima) warned that Israel must prepare itself for an influx of Syrian Alawite refugees in the aftermath of Syrian President Bashar Assad's inevitable downfall.

Speaking at the Shabbat Culture event at the Tel Aviv Museum, the MK explained that once Assad, an Alawite, is ousted from power, the country's Sunni majority will begin a mass execution of the minority Alawite sect.

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