News / USA

Obama: No Scenario for US Troops in Syria

A boy stands near rubble and damaged buildings after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, in Raqqa province, east Syria, May 2, 2013.A boy stands near rubble and damaged buildings after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, in Raqqa province, east Syria, May 2, 2013.
x
A boy stands near rubble and damaged buildings after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, in Raqqa province, east Syria, May 2, 2013.
A boy stands near rubble and damaged buildings after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, in Raqqa province, east Syria, May 2, 2013.
Kent Klein
President Barack Obama said Friday he does not foresee sending U.S. ground troops into Syria. The president spoke at a joint news conference with Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla in San Jose, Costa Rica.

When asked what he might do if more evidence of Syrian government chemical weapons use is produced, Obama said he has not ruled anything out, but sending ground troops is not likely.

“I do not foresee a scenario in which boots on the ground in Syria, American boots on the ground in Syria, would not only be good for America but also would be good for Syria,” said Obama.

The president said Middle Eastern leaders he has consulted agree.

Obama said if systematic use of chemical weapons in Syria is confirmed, the United States will take that information to the international community.

Meanwhile, he defended his administration’s response so far.

“We are not waiting. We are not standing by. We are currently the largest humanitarian donor to deal with the crisis in Syria. We are the largest contributor of non-lethal aid to the opposition. We have mobilized 80 countries to support the opposition,” said Obama.

Friday was the president’s second day of meetings with leaders in Latin America. As he did the day before with President Enrique Pena Nieto in Mexico, Obama talked with Chinchilla about the regional economy, security and immigration.

But as in Mexico, questions were asked about regional cooperation on fighting the drug trade and the accompanying violence, and especially about fighting the demand for drugs in the U.S.

Obama said Washington has done a great deal to combat the problem, and he pledged to do more.

“Much of the violence in the region is fueled by demand for illegal drugs, including in the United States. So we are going to keep on pursuing a comprehensive approach, not only through law enforcement, but also through education and prevention and treatment, that can reduce demand,” said Obama.

Both presidents emphasized the growing strength of the region’s economic ties. Obama said American trade with Costa Rica has doubled since the U.S. approved the Central American Free Trade Agreement with six countries in 2004.

The president said strengthened economies throughout the region would enable its countries to offer their people a better way of life and reduce the incentive for drug trafficking. And Obama said he would support immigration reform legislation that recognizes same-sex unions, but did not say whether he would sign a bill that does not.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Chuck
May 04, 2013 12:39 AM
A no fly zone blockade by the major Western powers would soon put a stop to the airstrikes which are a real threat and the delivery of munitions by other Countries to Syria would be cut off. Closing down the Syrian national airport and internal airbases would help.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid