News / Middle East

Clinton: Russia, China Blocking Progress on Syria 'Intolerable'

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at Paris talks on Syria Jun 6, 2012
US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at Paris talks on Syria Jun 6, 2012
PARIS — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says it is "intolerable" that Russia and China continue to block a peaceful resolution of the crisis in Syria by backing President Bashar al-Assad.  Secretary Clinton told a Paris meeting of governments supporting Assad opponents that the United Nations should impose economic sanctions against Damascus.

Secretary Clinton says it is not enough for the so-called Friends of the Syrian People to support Assad opponents when Russia and China are "holding up progress."

"I ask you to reach out to Russia and China and to not only urge, but demand that they get off the sidelines and begin to support the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people," Clinton said.  "It is frankly not enough just to come to the Friends of the Syrian People because I will tell you very frankly, I don't think Russia and China believe they are paying any price at all, nothing at all, for standing up on behalf of the Assad regime."

Russia and China have repeatedly vetoed tougher U.N. Security Council action against Syria. But they have agreed to the authority of an eventual transitional governing body for the country, something that Secretary Clinton says should be part of a new resolution demanding implementation of a U.N./Arab League peace plan.

"We now have them on record supporting a transition," Clinton added.  "And we should go back and ask for a resolution in the Security Council that imposes real and immediate consequences for non-compliance, including sanctions under Chapter 7."



Senior U.S. officials traveling with Secretary Clinton say that Chapter 7 resolution will not include U.N. troops, but will focus instead on unified international economic sanctions. Past enthusiasm for a weapons embargo is waning amid questions about enforcing compliance by Russian and Iran as well as concern about its potential impact on the armed opposition.

Russia and China are not part of these talks in Paris, which include representatives from nearly 100 countries, including some 40 foreign ministers.

Since Russia and China agreed to the authorities of a transitional government at a meeting in Geneva last week, there have been conflicting interpretations about whether that deal means President Assad must give up power.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says the Geneva agreement imposes nothing on the Syrian people as it puts no preconditions on national dialogue and excludes no one from the process.

Speaking in Paris Friday, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said President Assad and some of the countries who met in Geneva are mistakenly interpreting his future.

"Transition involves change," said Davutoglu.  "Why do we need a transition government? We need a transition government because the existing government is not legitimate, is not efficient to control the country and to lead a transitional process."

Davutoglu says delaying the process increases the danger and allows the Assad government to kill more people.

The United Nations says there are more than one million Syrians in need of urgent humanitarian assistance. Reading a statement from U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, assistant secretary general for political affairs Oscar Fernandez-Taranco says the Syrian conflict is at a critical stage.

"Killings, abductions, and kidnappings have also become increasingly inter-communal, threatening to erode the very fabric of Syrian society," noted Fernandez-Taranco.  "A sectarian civil war in Syria would be devastating for Syria and for the region."

The head of the U.N. monitoring mission in Syria, Major General Robert Mood, says violence has reached "unprecedented" levels and there must a cease-fire before unarmed observer teams can resume their mission.

You May Like

Video Iran Nuclear Deal Becomes US Campaign Issue

Voters in three crucial battleground states - Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania - overwhelmingly oppose nuclear deal with Iran More

With IS in Coalition Cross-Hairs, al-Qaida's Syria Affiliate Reemerges

Jabhat al-Nusra has rebounded, increasingly casting itself as a critical player in battle for Syria’s future More

Lessons Learned From Katrina, 10 Years Later

FEMA chief Craig Fugate says key changes include better preparation, improved coordination among state, federal assistance agencies More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
 Previous    
by: Dew
July 06, 2012 2:48 PM
Instability, destruction, and confusion have become widespread on Obama’s watch than the infamous Bush, I wonder why?????
In Response

by: AntiWarMonger
July 06, 2012 5:32 PM
It's all part of the "peaceful resolution" initiative (:- The US needs to focus more on problems at home!

by: John from: Accra
July 06, 2012 11:48 AM
And the continued arming of rebels by the USA, Saudi Arabia, Turkey Bahrain is worse than what Russia and China are doing.
Get it straight Hilary.

by: john smith from: sedona, az., usa
July 06, 2012 9:29 AM
We live in a political world where it is all about them and us, does not matter who is who. China and Russia are doing rebelling against the world because of their own self interest. I often wonder if countries will ever grow up?
In Response

by: Anonymous
July 07, 2012 7:10 PM
Great things are happening in Libya now, they had their first vote in years. What's best for the people, chosen by the people, not a tyrant. The same thing will happen in Syria eventually, and Russian Government will have to suck it up. I feel bad for the Russian people having a government ruled by Putin.
In Response

by: Emeka Okoye from: Nigeria.
July 07, 2012 8:39 AM
Because, China and Russia are not a democratic nation they will not support any thing democracy in Syria.And before the whole world now that China, Russia, and Iran are threats to the world peace.Whatever Iran is boasting today is being built with the assistance of Russia and China.
In Response

by: Alibaba from: Timbaktoo
July 06, 2012 6:34 PM
Look at Libya today, what a laughing stock created by the West & USA! Haven't you guys have enough of hypocrisy.
Comments page of 2
 Previous    

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs