News / Middle East

Kerry: Russia Enabling Assad 'Terror'

Kerry: Russia Enabling Assad 'Terror'i
X
February 18, 2014 7:14 PM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says Russian is enabling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's campaign of "terror" against his own people. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from Indonesia where Kerry called on Moscow to do more to help bring about a political solution to conflict through talks in Geneva.
Kerry: Russia Enabling Assad 'Terror'
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Russia is enabling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's campaign of "terror" against his own people. In Indonesia, Kerry called on Moscow to do more to help bring about a political solution to the conflict through talks in Geneva.
 
Secretary Kerry said Assad's forces continuing to barrel bomb civilians is evidence that the Syrian government is still pursuing a military solution to more than three years of violence.
 
"I regret to say they are doing so with increased support from Iran, from Hezbollah and from Russia. Russia needs to be a part of the solution and not be contributing so many more weapons and so much more aid that they are in fact enabling Assad to double down," said Kerry.
 
Efforts by international mediator Lakhdar Brahimi to find a political solution to the violence have so far failed, in part, Kerry said, because Russia is not doing enough to support these talks in Geneva.
 
"Russia, on several occasions, has stood up publicly with me or in other places and said they are committed to that transition government, to the Geneva Communiqué, and Geneva One. And yet we have not seen the kind of effort to create the dynamic by which that can be achieved," said Kerry.
 
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said it is opposition supporters, among them the United States, who are delaying progress by focusing unrealistically on forcing President Assad from power.
 
"When all who backed the opposition taking part in this process urged to make the implementation of the Geneva Communiqué in all its entirety a subject of the talks they in fact had in mind one thing only - regime change," said Lavrov.
 
Unable to accomplish that, Lavrov said, opposition backers are now stalling.
 
"Under many different pretexts there are attempts to derail the Geneva peace talks. Initially they wanted to derail the peace settlement on the chemical weapons issue. When that failed, they started trying to politicize the issue of the humanitarian crisis," said Lavrov.
 
Opposition leader Ahmed Jarba is trying to increase his standing among rebel fighters inside Syria. However, the fractious groups behind him are divided over potential power sharing with members of the Assad government, said U.S. Institute of Peace analyst Steve Heydemann.
 
"The coalition itself does not have the kind of legitimacy that I think would permit it to speak on behalf of all groups which oppose the Assad regime," said Heydemann.
 
Experts point out that Assad supporters see little reason to negotiate in Geneva, as they believe government forces now have a military advantage over the rebellion.
 
Neither the government nor its opponents have yet agreed to return to peace talks. In this recess, Kerry said, the international community must determine how best to find a political solution to the violence. He also said that greater cooperation from Russia will be key.

  • Pakistani teenage activist Malala Yousafzai (left), who was shot in the head by the Taliban for campaigning for girls' education, talks to Syrian refugee Mazoon Rakan, 16, about Mazoon's experience in the camp during her visit to the Zaatri refugee camp, in Jordanian city of Mafraq, near the border with Syria, Feb. 18, 2014. 
  • A Kurdish fighter from the Popular Protection Units (YPG) carries his son as he walks along a street, Sheikh Maqsoud neighborhood, Aleppo, Feb. 18, 2014. 
  • A man walks near a crater as smoke rises from a burning truck after what activists said were explosive barrels thrown by forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, al-Inzarat district, Aleppo, Feb. 18, 2014. 
  • Civil defense members and civilians extinguish the fire from a burning truck after what activists said were explosive barrels thrown by forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, al-Inzarat district, Aleppo, Feb. 18, 2014.
  • A civil defense worker puts out a fire after what activists said were explosive barrels thrown by forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, al-Inzarat district, Aleppo, Feb. 18, 2014. 
  • Children run across a street to avoid snipers in Deir al-Zor, eastern Syria Feb. 16, 2014.
  • A Free Syrian Army fighter runs for cover from forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad in the Sheikh Maqsoud neighborhood of Aleppo, Feb. 16, 2014. 
  • A Free Syrian Army fighter rests with his weapon in the Sheikh Maqsoud neighborhood of Aleppo, Feb. 16, 2014. 
  • A boy holds his baby sister, who survived what activists say was an airstrike by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Aleppo, Feb. 14, 2014.
  • Rescuers walk on the rubble of collapsed buildings after what activists said was an airstrike by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Aleppo, Feb. 14, 2014.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

Video Scientists Say We Need Softer Robots

Today’s robots are mostly hard, rigid machines, with sharp edges and forceful movements, but researchers at Carnegie Mellon University say they should be softer and therefore safer More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: ali baba from: new york
February 17, 2014 5:05 PM
if Assad accused for terror , how about the rebel. .the rebel started this civil war . many of them are foreigner .they are the one to blame for this tragedy. Arab oil countries are to be blamed for instigated the conflict . perhaps, Saudi and oil countries have the money and convince the politician that the rebel are angle. the rebel are raping woman and they called sexual jihad. the rebel force million to leave their land and live in refugee camp. they slaughter Christian like a sheep . the blame game should not be one side .it should be on two sides. the genes from Harvard ,please get real education about the Arab behavior.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs