The head of Syria's military police has defected from the army and declared allegiance to the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad.
Major General Abdelaziz Jassim al-Shalal was shown making a statement confirming his defection in a video broadcast on al-Arabiya TV late on Tuesday, saying he was joining "the people's revolution".
The defection came as a delegation of Syrian officials headed to Moscow on Wednesday to discuss proposals for ending the conflict following talks with the UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi in Damascus this week.
Wearing his uniform with a red insignia on the shoulder, Shalal spoke from a desk in a room in an undisclosed location. Some rebel sources said he had fled to Turkey. It was not clear when Shalal changed sides.
Reason 1) you lose too many family members or loved ones and change allegiances or 2) you feel as if the noose is tightening.
In this case it is probably the latter.
I'm a Huey Long Democrat. They've got a set of Republican waiters on one side and a set of Democratic waiters on the other side, but no matter which set of waiters brings you the dish, the legislative grub is all prepared in the same Wall Street kitchen. - 1932