World

Syrian president warns that the fall of his regime will bring instability to the Middle East

  • This citizen journalism image provided by the Local Council of Barzeh, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows the aftermath of rocket attacks on the Barzeh district of Damascus, Syria, Friday, April 5, 2013. A barrage of rockets slammed into a contested district on the northeastern edge of Damascus, killing several people and trapping others under the rubble, while violence raged around suburbs of the capital, activists said Friday. The attack on Barzeh, where rebels aiming to topple President Bashar Assad are known to operate, follows days of heavy fighting between the rebels and the military in the area.(AP Photo/Local Council of Barzeh)

    This citizen journalism image provided by the Local Council of Barzeh, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows the aftermath of rocket attacks on the Barzeh district of Damascus, Syria, Friday, April 5, 2013. A barrage of rockets slammed into a contested district on the northeastern edge of Damascus, killing several people and trapping others under the rubble, while violence raged around suburbs of the capital, activists said Friday. The attack on Barzeh, where rebels aiming to topple President Bashar Assad are known to operate, follows days of heavy fighting between the rebels and the military in the area.(AP Photo/Local Council of Barzeh)  (The Associated Press)

  • This image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows a damaged building due to heavy shelling in the Damascus suburb of Daraya, Syria, on Wednesday, April 3, 2013. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network via AP video)

    This image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows a damaged building due to heavy shelling in the Damascus suburb of Daraya, Syria, on Wednesday, April 3, 2013. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network via AP video)  (The Associated Press)

  • This citizen journalism image provided by the Local Council of Barzeh, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows the aftermath of rocket attacks on the Barzeh district of Damascus, Syria, Friday, April 5, 2013. A barrage of rockets slammed into a contested district on the northeastern edge of Damascus, killing several people and trapping others under the rubble, while violence raged around suburbs of the capital, activists said Friday. The attack on Barzeh, where rebels aiming to topple President Bashar Assad are known to operate, follows days of heavy fighting between the rebels and the military in the area.(AP Photo/Local Council of Barzeh)

    This citizen journalism image provided by the Local Council of Barzeh, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows the aftermath of rocket attacks on the Barzeh district of Damascus, Syria, Friday, April 5, 2013. A barrage of rockets slammed into a contested district on the northeastern edge of Damascus, killing several people and trapping others under the rubble, while violence raged around suburbs of the capital, activists said Friday. The attack on Barzeh, where rebels aiming to topple President Bashar Assad are known to operate, follows days of heavy fighting between the rebels and the military in the area.(AP Photo/Local Council of Barzeh)  (The Associated Press)

Syrian President Bashar Assad has warned that the fall of his regime or the breakup of Syria will unleash a wave of instability that will shake the Middle East for years to come.

Assad told the Turkish TV station Ulusal Kanal that "we are surrounded by countries that help terrorists and allow them to enter Syria."

He accused Turkey of knowingly supporting rebels but said it is not clear whether Jordan is intentionally backing his opponents.

Assad's interview was aired Friday evening, three days after it was shot in Syria.

He warned that if his government falls or if Syria is divided, it "will have a domino effect" across the region and create "a period of instability for long years and maybe decades."