Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned that an attack against Syria by Western countries could trigger a scene equal to that of Afghanistan. In an interview published in the Sunday edition of the British Sunday Telegraph, the first granted to a Western journalist since the early protests for seven months, Assad said that in case of possible US military intervention, any problem in his country would cause "an earthquake" that will burn the entire region. Since March, Syria has been the scene of riots and armed insurrection against the Assad regime. So far, based on UN data, an estimated 3,000 people have been killed. At least 20 Syrian soldiers were killed on Saturday, and 53 others were injured, in clashes against suspected military deserters in the city of Homs, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. In the interview, Assad affirmed that his country is different "in all respects" from Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen, where there have been revolts against the regimes. The president noted that Syria is now in the center of that region, and compared his country to a geological fault line. He added: If you play with the ground, there is the possibility of making an earthquake! He added: "Do you want another Afghanistan, or at least ten Afghanistans."