Majd was the fourth of Hafiz al-Assad’s five children. He was born a year after Bashar al-Assad and two years before Maher. The first family of Syria went to great lengths to protect his privacy. Little is known about the president’s younger brother. Most news reports about him are brief or inaccurate.
By all accounts, Majed had a difficult and troubled life. From early youth, he showed signs of instability, erratic behavior, and a propensity for depression, despite having a reputedly warm relationship with his father.
He began to self-medicate from an early age, experimenting with narcotics and quickly became dependent. The family struggled to help Majd. His brothers sought to end relationships with a string of hangers on who enabled his bad habits and indulged his weaknesses. For a period in the mid 1990s, he was hospitalized in London, in an effort to break his substance abuse. Bashar al-Assad visited him regularly there and oversaw his care. Numerous efforts to intervene on his behalf and develop a constructive environment around him that might have relieved his periods of depression failed.
Majd is survived by his wife, Ru’a Ayyoub, who was born in 1976 and graduated in business and economics from Tishriin University in Latakia. They had no children.
Majd al-Assad will be buried in Qardaha in the family mausoleum next to his father (d. 2000) and brother Basil (d. 1994) following afternoon prayers on Sunday 13/12/2009.
Here is the announcement of his death from SANA.
Damascus, (SANA) – President Bashar al-Assad announced the passing away of his brother Majd Hafez al-Assad in Damascus on the morning of Saturday 12/12/2009 after suffering from chronic disease.
The pure body of the late deceased will be laid to final rest in the city of Qardaha following the afternoon prayers on Sunday 13/12/2009.
دمشق – سانا
نعى السيد الرئيس بشار الأسد شقيقه المغفور له مجد حافظ الأسد الذي انتقل إلى رحمته تعالى في دمشق صباح اليوم السبت 25 ذي الحجة 1430 هجري الموافق لـ 12/12/2009 ميلادي اثر مرض عضال.
وسيشيع جثمانه الطاهر إلى مثواه الأخير في مدينة القرداحة بعد صلاة العصر من يوم الأحد 26 ذي الحجة 1430 هجري الموافق لـ13/12/2009 ميلادي.
الفقيد الراحل مجد من مواليد محافظة اللاذقية عام 1966 ميلادية، يحمل إجازة في الاقتصاد من جامعة دمشق عام 1989، ومتزوج.