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INTERNATIONAL > Russia, China will pay price for Syria: Clinton

PARIS/MOSCOW

The US adopts a hard line on Moscow and Beijing for objecting to action on Syria, while Russia says Clinton’s remarks are inappropriate

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Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoğlu speaks with Tunisian counterpart Abdesalem (R) in Paris. Davutoğlu calls for more international pressure during the meeting. AA photo

Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoğlu speaks with Tunisian counterpart Abdesalem (R) in Paris. Davutoğlu calls for more international pressure during the meeting. AA photo

Russia and China must “pay a price” for blocking U.N. sanctions that might press Syrian President Bashar al-Assad into stepping down, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said July 6 in some of Washington’s strongest remarks yet on the crisis.

“The only way that will change is if every nation represented here directly and urgently makes it clear that Russia and China will pay a price. They are holding up progress, blockading it. That is no longer tolerable,” Clinton told the Friends of the Syrian People conference in Paris on July 6.

Clinton’s remarks were followed immediately by a reaction from Russia, which was not present at the Paris meeting. “I categorically reject the formulation that Russia supports Bashar al-Assad’s regime in the situation that has developed in Syria,” said Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov in a statement quoted by Russian news agencies.

“What the Russian Federation is engaged in is not supporting specific politicians or political figures in Syria, but in work that we hope will help create the important dialogue between the authorities and the opposition. … The issue is not supporting specific political figures or leaders, but putting the process of regulating the crisis on a normal political basis.”

Russia criticize Clinton’s remarks as ‘inappropriate’


“The statement is inappropriate,” Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov also told the Interfax news agency in an interview, saying the comment was not in line with the recent declaration signed in Geneva.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, present at the conference, called for pressure on countries that support the Syrian administration and urged the necessity of establishing a transitional government for the future of the country.

French President François Hollande urged stiffer sanctions against al-Assad and more support for the rebels. “Bashar al-Assad must go ... It’s in the interest of Syria, of its neighbors and everyone who wants peace in the region.” British Foreign Secretary William Hague told the conference those countries that failed to impose sanctions were allowing al-Assad’s forces to go on killing.

Clinton and Hague were among the 50 foreign ministers and delegates meeting in Paris. But Russia and China stayed away from a meeting they said was one-sided.

In its final statement on July 6, the Friends of the Syrian People called for a U.N. Security Council resolution backed by sanctions.

The meeting was seeking a resolution under the U.N. charter’s Chapter 7, including the threat of sanctions and diplomatic action in line with Article 41, which explicitly does not allow for use of armed force. Participants at the Paris meeting called on the U.N. Security Council to “adopt, under the United Nations Charter’s Chapter 7, a resolution that reaffirms envoy Kofi Annan’s six-point plan,” the final statement said.

July/07/2012

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READER COMMENTS

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ilker avni

7/8/2012 8:18:57 PM

China and Russia is more interested in they relations since they just signed a new pact,they want to be as one, neither wants to be seen as not agreeing with each other or having disgreements with each.China has placed high tariffs on American goods upsetting America.America has threaten to do the same on Chinese goods,i have allways said the next world war will be trade war.Russia and China are a force to be reckoned with.

Nature Guy

7/8/2012 4:56:46 PM

The primary for Russia & China to continue their positions toward Syria is to protect their financial & military interests. Secondarily, because both Russia & China are relatively autocratic states, they do not want "external" influences in Syria more out of concern that similar "interventions" could be used by the U.N. in any future social upheavals within China or Russia.

Aslam Benli

7/8/2012 5:48:55 AM

well, lets see, Russia and China support Syria... America support Turkiye... is that hard to understand?

Hama Rahim

7/7/2012 10:51:08 PM

Russia and China?? The only ones who will "pay a price" is Turkey for having armed the opposition and militants and have made the situation a lot more bloodier in Syria. Dont forget the saying "Those who lives in a house of glass should not throw rocks on others".

Engin Atik

7/7/2012 11:49:25 AM

This sounds like limits on oil and natural gas imports from Russia at the expense of Europe including Turkey. Plans made in July may not match the realities of February.

sam stevens

7/7/2012 11:02:04 AM

What a ridiculous thing for Clinton to say. There is nothing she can do to force Russia & China to do her bidding. A foolish statement from a foolish woman.

Deniz Can

7/7/2012 1:28:21 AM

Seeing the energy that US put to "protect" the civilian form antidemocratic policy of Assad, reminds hypocrisy of US, who have bee vetoing almost every resolution has been taking against Israel. The Palestinians have been subjected inhuman conditions under the blockade of Israel and therefore suffering and dying because of the lack of medicine and food. The world will never experience peace and justice, as long as the standards of justice and peace are defined depending on place and nations
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