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Syrian prime minister sacked after just 2 months in office

Published on Aug 6, 2012 5:26 PM
Governor of al-Qunatara city and former agriculture minister Riyad Hijab is seen in al-Qunatara in this Feb 15, 2011 file photo. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad named Hijab as prime minister on Wednesday June 6, 2012, to form a new government after last month's parliamentary election, state television said. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

AZAZ, Syria (REUTERS) - Syrian Prime Minister Riyad Hijab has been sacked, state television reported on Monday, and an official source in Amman said he has defected with his family to neighbouring Jordan.

Syrian state TV announced Mr Hijab's dismissal as government forces appeared to prepare a ground assault to clear battered rebels from Aleppo, the country's biggest city.

President Bashar al-Assad appointed Mr Hijab, a former agriculture minister, as prime minister only in June following a parliamentary election which authorities said was a step towards political reform but which opponents dismissed as a sham.

"Hijab is in Jordan with his family," said the Jordanian official source, who did not want to be further identified.

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