Kerry insists no place for Assad in Syria's future

WASHINGTON Fri Jan 17, 2014 3:42pm GMT

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks during his news conference at Syrian Donors Conference at the Bayan Palace in Kuwait City January 15, 2014. REUTERS/Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Pool

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks during his news conference at Syrian Donors Conference at the Bayan Palace in Kuwait City January 15, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Pool

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry insisted on Friday Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has no place in Syria's future and said the United States was not without options on stepping up pressure on him.

Kerry will lead a U.S. delegation to Switzerland next week for peace talks between the Syrian government and rebels aimed at ending the country's civil war. His comments also come as Syrian opposition groups vote on whether to attend the U.N.-sponsored talks in Montreux, Switzerland.

"I believe as we begin to get to Geneva, and begin to get into this process, that it will become clear there is no political solution whatsoever if Assad is not discussing a transition and if he thinks he is going to be part of that future. It is not going to happen," Kerry told a news conference after meetings with his Canadian and Mexican counterparts.

"We are also not out of options with respect to what we may be able to do to increase the pressure and further change the calculus," he added.

Syria sank into civil war after a peaceful street uprising in March 2011 against four decades of Assad family rule. The revolt spiralled into an armed insurgency after the army responded with massive and deadly force to suppress the unrest.

(Reporting by Lesley Wroughton)

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Comments (3)
Raymond.Vermont wrote:
Kerry insists no place for Assad in Syria’s future

Assad (probably) insists no place for Kerry in Syria’s future

Jan 17, 2014 3:51pm GMT  --  Report as abuse
Raymond.Vermont wrote:
Bang goes the Kerry credibility… Again!

New analysis of rockets used in Syria chemical attack undercuts U.S. claims

Jan 17, 2014 4:14pm GMT  --  Report as abuse
JaquesTheLad wrote:
More conspiracies to defend Assad, Raymond? Tsk, tsk – you’ll not get to heaven that way.

The findings that Assad committed the mass gassing atrocity came from the U.N. first and foremost.

But you would rather take the word of a brutal foreign dictator over that of the U.N.?

It speaks volumes Raymond.

Incidentally, do you genuinely think that a bone fide war criminal like Assad is really the best person to lead a country? Personally I’d say they were the worst.

Jan 17, 2014 7:59pm GMT  --  Report as abuse
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