Major General Abdul Aziz Jasim al-Shalal, the head of Syria’s military police, has defected from the country. Abdul Jasim al-Shalal left his post on Tuesday and traveled to Turkey where he joined the revolutionaries who are fighting against the countries current repressive regime.
After fleeing from the Syrian army, al-Shalal announced his defection on YouTube. In his video, the former Major General said the country’s government is no longer fulfilling its primary mission to defend the country from attack. Instead, he says military officials have turned the country’s military into a gang that attacks the country’s own people.
Abdul also says many other officers want to defect but have not been given the opportunity.
In defecting, al-Shalal also confirmed that the Syrian government recently used gas against rebel troops.
The defection comes at a time when nearly 100 Syrian citizens are being killed per day with more than 45,000 people killed since the country’s civil war began in Spring 2011.
According to several sources, Major General Shalal had been sympathetic to rebel forces for some time, in several cases removing police barricades to allow for more effective rebel protects.
The Major General was scheduled to retire next month.
If it is discovered that a Major General for the military police was sympathetic to rebel forces for a long period of time, that realization could wreak havoc on President Bashar al-Assad and his Baath Party.
Also recently defecting were Manaf Tlass, Brigadier General of the Syrian Republican Guard, and his brother and father (a former Minister of Defense). Other defectors include Syria’s prime minister, deputy ministers, and a several ambassadors.
Syrian officials who have defected have been quick to support rebel efforts in the region.
Here is Major General Abdul Aziz Jasim al-Shalal’s YouTube defection video (not in English):