Syria rebels: We'll cease fire if tanks, artillery leave

BEIRUT, March 31 Sat Mar 31, 2012 10:38am EDT

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BEIRUT, March 31 (Reuters) - Syrian rebels are ready to stop fighting the moment the Syrian army withdraws its tanks, artillery and heavy weapons from opposition areas, a spokesman for Free Syrian Army commanders inside Syria said on Saturday.

"We cannot accept the presence of tanks and troops in armoured vehicles among the people. We don't have a problem with the ceasefire. As soon as they remove their armoured vehicles, the Free Syrian Army will not fire a single shot," Lieutenant Colonel Qassim Saad al-Din told Reuters by telephone from Homs.

A rebel officer in Damascus said separately: "When (President Bashar) al-Assad's gangs stop the shelling and killing of civilians, then our leaders can issue an order to stop operations and we will commit to it to show our good intentions."

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