But getting them to work together and resist the urge to fight, he said, is unrealistic.
Meanwhile, the United Nations' investigation into alleged war crimes in Syria is moving forward. The Geneva-based U.N. commission investigating war crimes announced Thursday it has requested a meeting with al-Assad to discuss gaining access to Syria for the team.
Carla del Ponte, who once served as prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, is part of the commission. Noted for her investigation of war crimes in the Balkans in the 1990s, she cited similarities with past probes.
"The similarity is, of course, we are handling the same crimes, crimes against humanity and war crimes for sure," she said.
The Syrian government's isolation continued to grow.
In Jedda, Saudi authorities announced the deportation of three staff members of the Syrian Consulate General, the official Saudi Press Agency said Thursday. The move was taken because "authorities have concluded that their behaviors are incompatible with their consular duties and assignments," it said.