Clinton: Russia Needs to Back Syrian Transition to Remove Assad
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is urging Russia to help start a political transition in Syria, the outcome of which she says will be President Bashar al-Assad’s ouster.
When Secretary Clinton spoke Friday with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, she says her message was simple and straight-forward.
“We all have to intensify our efforts to achieve a political transition. And Russia has to be at the table helping that to occur. The Syrian people want and deserve change,” she said.
Speaking Sunday in Stockholm, she says she made clear to her Russia counterpart that there is no point to any meeting unless it includes all aspects of the plan led by U.N. and Arab League envoy Kofi Annan, focusing on a political transition in Damascus.
“Assad’s departure does not have to be a precondition, but it should be an outcome so that the people of Syria have a chance to express themselves,” she said.