Syrian government television broadcast a video of former defense minister Ali Habib Tuesday evening. It was not clear when the video was shot and if it disproved reports that he had been assassinated. During the video, Habib said he had checked himself into a hospital for health reasons and said media reports about the reason he was replaced were part of a campaign to discredit the government of President Bashar Al-Assad.
The television station said Habib was replaced because of his health. Western diplomats were cited, Wednesday, as saying his ouster was due to his opposition to sending troops into the city of Hama.