News / Middle East

US, Britain to Discuss Syria Amid Reports of Sectarian Killings

This citizen journalism image provided by Edlib News Network, ENN, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows an elderly Syrian rebel in a trench in Idlib province, June 12, 2013.
This citizen journalism image provided by Edlib News Network, ENN, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows an elderly Syrian rebel in a trench in Idlib province, June 12, 2013.
VOA News
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry hosts his British counterpart for talks Wednesday on Syria, as activists report anti-government rebels killed dozens of Shi'ites in a town in eastern Deir el-Zour province.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a pro-opposition monitoring group that has reported abuses on both sides of the conflict, said most of the 60 victims in the town of Hatla late Tuesday were pro-government Shi'ite militiamen.

A video posted online by rebels showed dozens of gunmen carrying black Islamist flags celebrating and firing guns as smoke curled above several buildings in Hatla. The Observatory said rebels secured control of the town and burned down a number of houses in the Shi'ite district. Shi'ite civilians then fled.

A Syrian government official denounced the attack, calling it a "massacre" of civilians.

In Washington, Kerry and British Foreign Secretary William Hague will consider potential steps to achieve their goal of establishing a transitional government in Syria to lead the country out of more than two years of turmoil.

Both Britain and the United States have provided non-lethal support to rebels opposed to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, and have discussed the possibility of sending weapons.

The White House said Tuesday that arming the rebels remains one option President Barack Obama is considering as he weighs a range of possible actions related to Syria.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said the United States and its international partners continue to pursue a Syrian peace conference, but that the ongoing violence means they must also explore aiding the opposition.

Mr. Obama has ruled out any intervention that would require U.S. military forces inside Syria.

Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch is urging both the opposition and the Syrian government to allow humanitarian aid to freely flow to civilians inside Syria.

In a statement Wednesday, the rights group said the United Nations must also do more to help get aid across the border from Turkey into northern Syria.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Davis K. Thanjan from: New York
June 12, 2013 5:01 PM
The US and UK will have continuous discussions to end the civil war in Syria as both countries are reluctant to supply lethal weapons to the Syrian rebel forces. They will not be able to convene even a conference to discuss the future of Syria with Assad and the rebel forces included. Unless the dictator Assad agree to vacate power and leave Syria, both the US and UK cannot get the opposition forces to come for any conference regarding the future government in Syria to end the civil war. What leverage US and UK have with Assad and the opposition forces? Nothing. The only way to end the agony of people of Syria is to supply lethal weapons to Syrian rebel forces to combat the advanced weapon system being supplied by Russia, Iran and Hezbollah of Lebanon. If both the US and UK don't want to help the rebel forces, the best face saving strategy for both countries is to promote the idea of a conference which will never happen.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More