Germany: Assad not legitimate if violence continues

BERLIN - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad will lose his legitimacy to rule if he does not end a military crackdown on civilian protesters, German government spokesman Christoph Steegmans said on Monday.
His comment added to international condemnation of Assad's handling of an almost five-month-old uprising that escalated at the weekend and even prompted a rare rebuke from Saudi Arabia.
"The Syrian army as we've seen over the weekend has continued its brutal attacks on civilians," Steegmans told reporters at a regular government news briefing.
"If President Assad continues to reject dialogue with the Syrian people and use violence, it is the view of the German government that he forfeits his legitimacy to further lead the country in the future," he added.