First Published: 2013-06-22

 

Kerry’s recipe to end Syria conflict: More weapons and a pinch of peace

 

US Secretary of State says supporters of Syrian opposition will step up military, other aid in bid to end ‘imbalance’ on ground.

 

Middle East Online

‘Future of Syria is not chosen by one man’

DOHA - US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Saturday that supporters of the Syrian opposition will step up military and other aid in a bid to end an "imbalance" on the ground in President Bashar al-Assad's favour.

Kerry, speaking at a "Friends of Syria" conference of foreign ministers in Qatar, said Washington remained committed to a peace plan that includes a conference in Geneva and a transitional government picked both by Assad and the opposition.

He said the United States supported the original Geneva Communique as it sets up a "process by which a transitional government would be put in place to end the conflict, that transitional government being chosen by mutual consent of both the Assad regime as well as the opposition."

The rebels need more support "for the purpose of being able to get to Geneva and to be able to address the imbalance on the ground," Kerry said.

"The United States and other countries here -- in their various ways, each choosing its own approach -- will increase the scope and scale of assistance to the political and military opposition," he said.

Kerry said the governments at the conference -- which include stalwart supporters of the rebels Qatar and Saudi Arabia -- would work to "coordinate our support" to the opposition's Supreme Military Council.

He accused Assad of an "internationalisation" of the conflict which has claimed nearly 100,000 lives by bringing in the support of Iran and the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah.

"Reliable civilian governance and a stronger and more effective armed opposition will better enable the opposition to be able to provide the counterweight to the initiative of Assad," he said.

Kerry voiced hope for a solution "where the future of Syria is not chosen by one man representing one family or one group that is willing and content to kill people of all backgrounds, of all faiths and all beliefs simply to hold on to power".

US President Barack Obama has announced plans to step up assistance to the rebels after concluding that Assad crossed his stated red line by using chemical weapons.

But the United States has said little about its own assistance, with Obama voicing concern about becoming too involved in the increasingly sectarian conflict.

 

Moscow seeks to boost its influence in Kurdistan through oil

Tillerson does not expect Gulf crisis to be resolved soon

35 Egyptian police killed in Islamist ambush

How Raqa recapture affects complex Syrian war

Ancient Turkish town set to vanish forever under floodwaters

Morocco recalls Algeria envoy over 'hashish money' jibe

Ceremony marks 75 years since WWII Battle of El Alamein

Somalia attack death toll rises to 358

Long road ahead for families of jailed Morocco protesters

Israel hits Syrian artillery after Golan fire

Germany advances Israel submarine deal after corruption holdup

Bashir Gemayel's killer convicted, 35 years later

SDF hails 'historic victory' against IS in Raqa

Hamas delegation visits Iran

Turkish court orders release of teacher on hunger strike

Yemen rebel youth minister urges children to join war

Iran's Guards show no intention of curbing activities in Mideast

EU will cut some money for Turkey as ties sour

Iraqi workers return to oil fields retaken from Kurds

Kurdish disarray shows resurgence of Iraq's army

Iranian military chief visits frontline near Syria's Aleppo

Iraq army takes last Kurd-held area of Kirkuk province

Turkey issues arrest warrants for 110 people over Gulen links

Lebanon approves first budget since 2005

Hamas calls US unity comments ‘blatant interference’

OPEC chief pleased with oil market rebalancing

Turkish police detain leading civil society figure

G7, tech giants meet to tackle terror online

Iraq’s Kurdish regional government open to Baghdad talks

Tensions flare among Yemen's rebels

Baghdad court issues arrest warrant for Iraqi Kurd VP

Erdogan, Nigerian counterpart to ramp up cooperation

Russian medics operate on Yemen's Saleh despite embargo

Baghdad condemns oil deal between Russia’s Rosneft, Kurds

Power shifts again in Iraq's multi-ethnic Kirkuk

Syrian general accused of journalist deaths killed in Deir Ezzor

Raqa liberators ready for civilian handover, on to next battle

Revolutionary Guards say Iranian missile program will continue

Erdogan calls on three major mayors to resign

ICC investigating several war crimes in Mali

Erdogan says may shut Iraqi border at any moment

Tunisian couple jailed for 'public indecency' over car kiss

Next round of Syria talks at end October

Gazans hope Palestinian reconciliation ends their woes

PSG's Khelaifi to be quizzed in Swiss World Cup probe