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Syrian Deserters Cut Loyalist Troops to 50,000, IISS Says

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government can only count on the loyalty of 50,000 troops, down from a total of 220,000 at the start of the country’s civil war, according to an analysis.

The International Institute for Strategic Studies, a London based research organization, said the regime now relies on elite units including special forces formations, the Republican Guard and the 3rd and 4th Divisions.