News / Middle East

US, Russia Committed to Syria Peace Talks

US Secretary of State John Kerry with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the ASEAN summit in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei, July 2, 2013.
US Secretary of State John Kerry with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the ASEAN summit in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei, July 2, 2013.
— U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says planned peace talks for Syria may now be delayed until after August. He met separately with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov Tuesday about the conflict. Those talks came on the sidelines of a forum of South East Asian nations in Brunei.
 
Kerry said Russia and the United States have "the most significant difference" on the question of Syria but both are "more than serious, committed" to the process of getting the two sides in that country to talks on a transitional government.

"Our countries have an ability to be able to make a difference if we can pull together in that effort," Kerry noted.

Russia is supplying arms to forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The United States says it is now ready to arm the rebellion against him. But Kerry said he and Lavrov are still pushing for those transitional government talks, narrowing some of the differences over a conference that Kerry says may be pushed back until after August.

"What is clear to me coming out of the meeting and what we both wanted to ascertain from each other is the level of seriousness and the capacity to be able to do this," he said.

Kerry said the success of talks planned in Geneva relies on a transitional government by mutual consent that has a full transfer of power, regardless of the military situation on the ground.

"Whether the Assad regime is doing better or whether the opposition is doing better is frankly not determinative of the outcome because the outcome requires a transition government. And that's why it is valuable to try to get to Geneva," Kerry explained.

Kerry added that he and Lavrov agree there is not a military victory in Syria that keeps it together as a country.

"And number two that we have an obligation to try to work toward a peaceful resolution," he stressed,  "because a peaceful settlement is the best way to save the state of Syria and to minimize the destruction. That commitment remains a solid one between both of us."

Kerry said he raised with Lavrov the the issue of the former U.S. intelligence analyst Edward Snowden who is living in a Moscow airport transit lounge after leaking details of a U.S. surveillance program. Kery said Snowden is not Lavrov's portfolio so they did not discuss any substantive progress, but Kerry said he made clear how the issue fits into the U.S.-Russia relationship.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L) meets with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu before attending the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) security meetings in Bandar Seri Begawan, July 2, 2013.U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L) meets with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu before attending the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) security meetings in Bandar Seri Begawan, July 2, 2013.
x
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L) meets with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu before attending the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) security meetings in Bandar Seri Begawan, July 2, 2013.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L) meets with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu before attending the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) security meetings in Bandar Seri Begawan, July 2, 2013.
In Kerry's talks with the Turkish foreign minister, a senior State Department official said they focused on ways to strengthen Assad opponents and expand humanitarian assistance for civilians displaced by the fighting. Kerry and Davutoglu both expressed concern over attacks by Assad loyalists against civilians in the city of Homs and over what a U.S. official called "Hezbollah's continued violent and destabilizing interference in Syria."

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Michael from: USA
July 02, 2013 7:50 AM
The idea of a transitional Syrian government is what the Syndicate wants to investigate. Actually the people want prophecy. The problem is that people don't know what to say to anyone

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid