He also thanked Russia and China and for not letting the West decide Syria’s faith.
“We are interested in negotiations to end the conflict, but terrorist activity of the rebels shouldn’t be ignored” Assad said adding that “we will not have dialogue with a puppet opposition led by the West.”
“We will dialogue with the masters of their decisions not the slaves of foreign powers,” Assad stated.
Syria’s President Bashar Assad offered a new comprehensive plan to end Syria's bloody crisis in his rare speech in Damascus Sunday.
Reconciliation could take place only with those “who have not betrayed Syria” and who are not puppets brought from the West, Assad declared, urging foreign countries to end support for the opposition.
The President’s plan included a national dialogue and a constitutional referendum as well as an "expanded government" which would then oversee new elections, a new constitution and general amnesty.
Syria’s President Bashar Assad delivered his first speech since June last year on the situation in the country Sunday.
Assad has announced a new peace plan at the same time rejecting any dialogue with the opposition. “We will not have dialogue with a puppet made by the West,” Assad said.
The President also claimed that Syria is not seeing a conflict between the state and the opposition, but between the “nation and its enemies”.
“We are interested in a political solution, but we haven’t so far found a partner,” Assad said.
“The first step towards a political solution would require no funding and arming of the opposition, which carries out terrorist operations and controls the borders,” he added.
The address was televised by a number of foreign channels.
Syria's President Bashar Assad appeared before cheering crowds in the capital Damascus in a rare public speech to the nation.
Mr Assad called for a "full national mobilisation" to fight against the rebels, whom he branded Al-Qaeda "terrorists" militarily supported by other countries.
The President has also proposed a new peace plan, including a new constitution and amnesty, there was no suggestion of him relinquishing his power.
President Bashar al-Assad said on Sunday that rebel forces trying to oust his regime were backed by foreign powers waging an "external war" against Syria.
He called opposition forces "Western puppets."
Al-Assad also thanked Russia, China and Iran for their support of his regime.
Al-Assad says rebel forces are terrorist gangs
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Sunday that rebels fighting to overthrow his regime were "terrorists" and "criminals" who harbour al-Qaeda's extremist ideology.
He vowed to defeat the rebellion.
"These are the enemies of the people, the enemies of God. Eventually they resorted to terrorism to terrorize the people," al-Assad said in a televised address.
"They call it a revolution, but it has nothing to do with revolution. A revolution needs thinkers. Those are a bunch of criminals."
Syria's Assad arrives for speech to wild applause
Syria's president Bashar al-Assad arrived to wild applause at the House of Arts and Culture in Damascus for his first public address in seven months, live television coverage showed.
The speech marks the first time the head of state, who has faced nearly two years of a popular revolt turned civil war, has made a public address since June.
Voice of Russia, dpa, AFP
Syria’s president Bashar Assad will deliver a speech in Damascus today in which he will outline his plan for resolving the crisis in the troubled Arab country, Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported on Saturday.
The plan will provide for a ceasefire, monitored by UN observers, and setting up a commission to draw up a new constitution and form a national unity government to hold free parliamentary elections under international oversight.
President Assad does not intend to step down and will run for re-election in 2014.
Syria's state run news agency says President Bashar Assad will deliver a speech on Sunday in a rare address to the nation.
SANA said Saturday that Assad will speak about the latest developments in Syria. It did not provide more details. “President Bashar al-Assad will deliver a speech on Sunday morning on the latest developments in Syria and the region,” the agency said on Saturday, without specifying the time of the address.
The announcement came as Iran’s Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi prepares to visit Egypt on Jan. 9 for a two-day trip aimed at discussing the Syria crisis and Tehran-Cairo bilateral talks, media reports said on Saturday.
Salehi will meet his counterpart Mohammed Kamel Amr and President Mohamed Mursi during his stay in Cairo, said Mojtaba Amani, the head of Tehran’s interests section in the Egyptian capital, according to the ISNA news agency.
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and Egypt on Saturday called for a peaceful solution to the conflict roiling Syria, but said the terms of a settlement to end the bloodshed there must be defined by the Syrian people.
The speech would be the first by the embattled leader in months, and comes amid intense fighting between government troops and rebels on the outskirts of Damascus.
Assad has rarely spoken in public since the uprising against him began in March 2011.
Voice of Russia, TASS, AP, Al Arabiya News