Kerry seeks to reassure rebels on Assad departure
The new U.S.-Russia peace initiative for Syria will inevitably lead to the departure of President Bashar Assad, Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday, moving to reassure Syrian rebels and their allies that the Obama administration had not backed down on its insistence that Assad must go.
“There is no way that anybody here believes that the opposition is ever going to give consent to President Assad to be running that government,” Kerry told reporters in Rome.
His comments are part of a concerted U.S. campaign to persuade a skeptical opposition that Washington has not softened its stance on Assad, even if his government is invited to the peace talks envisioned in the U.S.-Russia plan.
Los Angeles Times