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US: Iran may contribute to Syrian peace settlement

January 22, 2014, 23:17 UTC+3 MONTREUX

Kerry: military involvement of the United States was never off the table

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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon


MONTREUX, January 22. /ITAR-TASS/. Iran may contribute to the process of Syrian peace settlement, US Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday.

“Iran certainly does have an ability to be helpful,” Kerry told journalists during the Geneva-2 international peace conference on Syria.

“There are plenty of ways that that door can be opened in the next weeks or months, and my hope is they will want to join in a construction solution,” he said.

Military resolution

Johm Kerry said that a military resolution backed by the United States is still considered an option. It all depends on how Syria adheres to its promises, he said, emphasizing that military involvement of the United States was never off the table.

Bashar Al-Assad's role

US Secretary of State John Kerry said that Syrian President Bashar Assad cannot be part of the country’s transition government.

Kerry said that when trying to agree on “a transition government born by mutual consent,” negotiators should realize that the only option is that “Bashar Assad will not be part of that transition government.”

“There is no way, no way possible, that a man who has led a brutal response to his own people can regain legitimacy to govern,” the US secretary of state said as quoted by Reuters.

Kerry said the death toll in Syria stood at 130,000 people.

Geneva-2 is designed to negotiate ways to end the civil war in Syria that, according to UN statistics, has left over 100,000 people dead and displaced millions since its start in 2011. It was reported earlier that foreign ministers and high-ranking diplomats from 39 countries, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the leaders of the Arab League and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Syrian government and opposition delegations would attend the forum.

Kerry also said the conference was likely to launch peace talks and would be a check for the entire international community. He noted that certain progress had been reached in the Syrian settlement.

The peace conference on Syria has been organized by the United States and Russia, which however hold different positions regarding President Assad. Moscow has backed Assad’s regime in the Syrian civil war, and said the interests of all parties to the Syrian conflict should be taken into account, whereas Washington has said Assad should leave his post anyway.


Geneva-2, organized by Russia and the United States, seeks to find ways out of the Syrian crisis that, in line with UN statistics, has killed over 100,000 people and displaced millions since it started in 2011. The conference kicked off Wednesday.

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