August 18, 2011

Kerry Statement on Assad

Washington, DC – Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) issued a statement today as the Obama Administration and countries in the region ratcheted up the pressure on the Assad regime in Syria:

“It’s obvious that the best thing for the Syrian people is for President Assad to step aside and allow a peaceful transition. He missed an historic opportunity for a new relationship with the west and economic transformation for Syria. Now, with no end in sight to the regime’s brutality, President Assad has lost credibility and legitimacy. President Obama’s new sanctions will increase the political and economic isolation of the Syrian regime, and the tough words from Saudi Arabia and Turkey make clear that the regime is isolated even in its own neighborhood. I hope our friends in Europe and the Middle East will continue to speak out and enact measures as tough as those the United States has instituted.

“The Syrian people’s courage and determination in the face of violence is extraordinary. They deserve a government that represents their democratic aspirations and respects their human dignity. Syria’s future will ultimately be determined by the Syrian people. But given the potential for further sectarian violence and regional destabilization, we must all think about what comes next. The United States should continue to work with the United Nations, leading Arab and European states, and Turkey to consider ways to support the Syrian people and promote a peaceful transition to a Syria that is more tolerant and free.”

###

Press Contact

CONTACT: SFRC Communications, 202-224-3468