Syria conflict: The twin challenge of IS and Assad

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Media captionRichard Haass speaks to the BBC about President Assad's recent interview

Syria's President Assad seemed calm and confident in his interview with the BBC - that was the conclusion of Richard Haass, former State Department official and President of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Assad does not look like a man who fears he's about to lose his position. But as long as he's there, Mr Haass told me, it's a real problem for the coalition because several coalition members see Mr Assad almost as a big a problem as Islamic State.

Mr Haass believes the only solution for defeating the Islamic State is a ground force made up of Arab troops, but as he readily admits, that may be unrealistic.

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