Damascus -

President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday warned Western and Arab countries which his regime has blamed for violence in Syria that they will “pay a high price for supporting terror”.

In a speech delivered after he took the oath of office for a new seven-year term, Assad said: “What we are seeing today in Iraq and Lebanon, and all countries struck by this 'fake spring' disease... proves our warnings were right: Soon we will see Arab, regional and Western countries paying a high price for supporting terror.”

The Syrian leader was referring to the 2011 Arab Spring protest movements that demanded regime change in several countries across the Middle East and North Africa. - Sapa-AFP