Kerry : We Are Not Abandoning Syrian People

Prussels, 04 Muharram 1438/05 October 2016 (MINA) – US Secretary of State John Kerry lashed out Tuesday at the Syrian regime and its close ally Russia for committing atrocities against the Syrian people and for trying to pursue a military solution.

Speaking at an event organised by the think-tank German Marshall Fund of the United States in Brussels this afternoon, he stressed that the US will continue its efforts to find a political solution to end the war in Syria.

Referring to the US decision to suspend the bilateral discussions with Russia on the cessation of hostilities in Syria, he emphasized that “we are not giving up on the Syrian people. We are not abandoning the pursuit of peace. We are not going to leave the multilateral field. We are going to continue to find a way forward in order to end this war.”

“We would do everything possible through the Syrian international support group or the UN or through smaller multilateral meetings in order to try to find a way forward. We remain committed to a peaceful, stable, whole, united non-sectarian Syria,” stressed the US’s top diplomat.

He blasted the Syrian regime for using chlorine gas mixed with other ingredients to kill its citizens and drop barrel bombs on hospitals and children and women.

He condemned as “irresponsible and profoundly ill-advised decision by Russia to associate its interests and its reputation with that of Assad, a man who is responsible for torturing more than ten thousand people as well as perpetrating the extraordinary slaughter of his own people.”

“We will continue to pursue a meaningful, sustainable and forcible cessation of hostilities throughout the country and that includes the grounding of Syrian and Russian combat aircraft in designated areas. Russia knows exactly what it needs to do in order to get that cessation implemented in a fair and reasonable way,” said Kerry.

He expressed outrage that “Russia has turned a blind eye to Assad’s deplorable use of these weapons of war that he has chosen , chlorine gas m barrel bombs against his people.” “Together the Syrian regime and Russia seem to have rejected diplomacy in furtherance of trying to pursue a military victory, said Kerry who is in Brussels to attend an international conference on Afghanistan.

He said all opposition groups on the ground in Syria have allowed humanitarian aid to be delivered but Russia and the Syrian regime have yet to give their permission for safe passage.
He said the US will continue to work to create the conditions to allow resumption of talks on Syria among the parties.

In his one-hour speech Kerry also spoke about transatlantic relations with the EU and the UK and Brexit. (T/R07/R01)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agecy (MINA)