News / USA

Kerry Sees ‘Consequences’ if Syria Violates CW Accord

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (R), British Foreign Secretary William Hague (L) and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius attend a news conference after a meeting on Syria conflict at the Quai d'Orsay ministry in Paris Sept. 16, 2013.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (R), British Foreign Secretary William Hague (L) and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius attend a news conference after a meeting on Syria conflict at the Quai d'Orsay ministry in Paris Sept. 16, 2013.
Al Pessin
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States, Britain, France and, importantly Russia, agree Syria must face unspecified “consequences” if it does not live up to the agreement on its chemical weapons.  But Russia is insisting there be no threat of force in an upcoming U.N. Security Council resolution. 

Kerry stopped Monday in Paris to brief his French and British counterparts on his weekend talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.  The two reached a framework agreement for the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal by the middle of next year.  

After the Paris meeting, Kerry said the international community will insist Syrian President Bashar al-Assad complies.

“We will not tolerate avoidance or anything less than full compliance by the Assad regime to the core principles of what has been achieved here.  If Assad fails to comply with the terms of this framework, make no mistake, we are all agreed, and that includes Russia, that there will be consequences,” stated Kerry.

The secretary did not specify what the “consequences” will be.  But he also said the possibility of U.S. military action is “still on the table.”

Speaking minutes later in Moscow, Lavrov said if the three Western powers insist on a U.N. Security Council resolution that threatens the use of force, they would be “wrecking completely” the drive for peace talks on Syria. Russia wants any threat of force handled later, and only if necessary.

Lavrov said he expects the United States to “firmly adhere” to what he and Secretary Kerry agreed on during weekend talks in Geneva.  That agreement calls for U.N. inspections in Syria and commits the United States and Russia to support the use of force if Syria fails to comply.

A Security Council resolution is to formalize the plan, and Kerry said the resolution must have some enforcement mechanism.  Otherwise, he said, the Assad government will, in his words, “play games,” said Kerry.

“What we achieve in this agreement, as we translate [the] Geneva agreement into a United Nations resolution has to be strong and it has to be forceful.  It has to be real.  It has to be accountable.  It has to be transparent.  It has to be timely.  All of those things are critical.  And it has to be enforced.”

Secretary Kerry warned Assad not to take this agreement as recognition of his legitimacy or of any right to use his conventional forces against the opposition.  Kerry said the United States is committed to the opposition and to a political settlement to establish a transitional government to determine the future of Syria.

Kerry rejected complaints by some opposition leaders who want U.S. airstrikes on Syrian military targets.  Some in the opposition said they are left in a weaker position, but Kerry argued the agreement depriving the government of its most destructive type of weapon can only help the opposition.

He also rejected claims the plan is unworkable, saying if the Syrian government wants to comply, it can get inspectors into areas where its chemical weapons are stored, and the West will encourage the opposition not to disrupt the inspectors’ work.

At the Paris meeting, the three Western foreign ministers also said they will take further steps to strengthen the Syrian opposition, and will hold a meeting with its leaders in New York next week.

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers to Push for S. China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: nadia from: Iran
September 16, 2013 12:44 PM
Now, for the opponents of Assad, has provided a great excuse to attack Iran to take revenge for the blood spilled. And if Iran is involved in that, America will be forced to intervene.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs