Danny al-Baaj, Syria Diplomat, Defects

08/13/2012 12:14 pm ET

GENEVA -- A Syrian diplomat working at the United Nations in Geneva has joined his country's opposition after deciding he can no longer represent President Bashar Assad's regime.

A spokesman for the U.N. Human Rights Council, Rolando Gomez, identified the Syrian as Danny al-Baaj and described him as a junior member of his country's U.N. mission.

Syria is not a member of the 47-nation council, but al-Baaj worked with it as part of his duties. The uprising in Syria has been a major concern of the council since starting in March 2011.

A growing number of Syrian officials have switched to the opposition as the months have worn on.

Al-Baaj's family said he decided several days ago he could no longer represent Assad, but has not determined his next move.

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