News / Middle East

    US, Britain Weigh Syria Strategy

    Free Syrian Army fighters display what they said were shells used by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad during clashes with them in Aleppo's Karm al-Jabal district, June 2, 2013. Free Syrian Army fighters display what they said were shells used by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad during clashes with them in Aleppo's Karm al-Jabal district, June 2, 2013.
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    Free Syrian Army fighters display what they said were shells used by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad during clashes with them in Aleppo's Karm al-Jabal district, June 2, 2013.
    Free Syrian Army fighters display what they said were shells used by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad during clashes with them in Aleppo's Karm al-Jabal district, June 2, 2013.
    VOA News
    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry hosts his British counterpart William Hague for talks Wednesday in Washington focused on the situation in Syria.

    The meeting comes as both nations 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 Syrian 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.

    He declined to give guidance on when any decision will be made, emphasizing that national security leaders are regularly discussing the situation.

    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.

    The group said Wednesday the United Nations must also do more to help get aid across the border from Turkey into northern Syria.

    Human Rights Watch says it visited several northern provinces between December and April, and found civilians in need of food and medical aid.

    The group wants the United Nations to facilitate the work of non-governmental organizations who can provide the aid, or for the U.N. to use its own resources to get needed supplies into Syria.

    It also highlighted the challenges humanitarian groups are facing, both with Syrian bureaucracy that keeps aid from reaching opposition-held areas and with safely navigating aid through the multitude of rebel groups.

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    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    June 12, 2013 10:41 AM
    Yet the Syrians are dieing - of hunger, anxiety and bullets. Someone sits pretty in the White House and rules out presence of US troops in the conflict. Oh, do we miss Bush...! Where is America's respect? Well, anyway, what is Mr. Obama's reason for doing what he has done, or for not doing what he has not done? The man who butchered a soldier on the street in London was fighting a war of the muslims in UK, could someone else do the same by inaction? Seems more so if someone is pretending to a Christian when he was more truly a muslim. After all the butcher on London street bears a Christian name after he has changed his religion. So why not? May be it is the fear of Hezbollah, who knows, maybe someone is afraid to fail in battle with Hezbollah - after all don't we all see the magical way it routed the opposition fighters in Qusayr and now targeting Alepo. I really regret Hezbollah behind Israel's backyard and Austria's contingent pull out from Golan. The UN needs urgently to rebuild its forces out there as well as find solution to the Syrian crisis. It is getting dangerously away from reach - whether won by Assad-Hezbollah or by the Opposition who are in the main fanatical terrorists opposed to Israel. What I'm saying here is The UN should win this war, not Assad, not opposition.

    by: Richard from: NC
    June 12, 2013 10:39 AM
    The Baathist regime in Syria has sponsored terrorism for some time. The rebels may also be terrorists. However, the difference is that Russia isn't promising to provide sophisticated new weapons to the rebels. For this reason alone it is in the US interest to provide significant military support to the rebels.

    by: Michael from: USA
    June 12, 2013 8:10 AM
    U.S. intervention in Syria would implicate the free American people into feeling anxiety over Syria. Probably no U.S. President wants to walk the path of LBJ [1908-1973 A.D. Texas] even though the office of President holds alot of power to say whether troops should be sent or not. Vietnam can be understood through rhetoric about Communism, yet Islam is completely different. The American public probably believe in the principle that Moslem help Moslem in practice

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