BBC News 
May 30, 2013
The Syrian army has scored “major victories” against rebels and now holds “the balance of power” in the conflict, President Bashar al-Assad has reportedly told a Lebanese TV station.
Mr Assad is also quoted as saying Syria has received the first shipment of an advanced Russian air defence system.
Russia vowed to go ahead with sending S-300 missiles earlier this week.
The interview with Hezbollah-linked Al Manar TV is set to be broadcast later on Thursday.
In excerpts from the interview published by Lebanon’s pro-Syrian Al Akhbar newspaper, Mr Assad is quoted as saying: “The Syrian army has scored major victories against armed rebels on the ground and the balance of power is now with the Syrian army.”