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Zabougornov
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Откуда: Обер-группен-доцент, ст. руководитель группы скоростных свингеров, он же Забашлевич Оцаат Поэлевич

СообщениеДобавлено: Среда, 1 Май 2013, 21:05:50    Заголовок сообщения: Syria Ответить с цитатой

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/04/30/us-syria-crisis-usa-obama-idUSBRE93T0QX20130430

Obama won't rush to act against Syria over chemical arms

Photo
Tue, Apr 30 2013

By Steve Holland and Warren Strobel

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama signaled on Tuesday he is no rush to respond quickly to Syria's apparent use of chemical weapons, taking a cautious approach to the country's civil war, mirroring the views of the American public, most lawmakers and some U.S. allies.

Obama, who last year declared that the use or deployment of chemical weapons by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad would cross a "red line," told a White House news conference there was evidence those weapons were used, but there was still much that U.S. intelligence agencies did not know.

"We don't know how they were used, when they were used, who used them," he said, and, "We don't have a chain of custody that establishes what exactly happened."

Obama did not rule out action - military or otherwise - against Assad's government. But he repeatedly stressed he would not allow himself to be pressured prematurely into deeper intervention in Syria's two-year-long civil war.

The president's remarks raised the prospect that, despite declaring last week that there was evidence Assad's forces had used the nerve agent sarin "on a small scale," any U.S. government response will not be quick.

Obama's press secretary Jay Carney told reporters on Monday that there was no deadline for rendering a final judgment on whether chemical weapons were used, and by whom. "I would not give you a timetable," Carney said.

Privately, U.S. officials predict it will be weeks before any conclusion is reached.

Syria denies using chemical weapons.

BLOOD SAMPLES

Obama administration officials have not specified what "physiological" evidence they have that Syrian forces used sarin, but U.S. government sources said it included samples of blood from alleged victims, and of soil.

"My understanding of the situation is that the various intelligence agencies are quite confident that human beings were exposed to sarin, and that's based on physical samples and chemical analysis of blood from the victims," said Gary Samore, a former Obama nonproliferation adviser who is now at Harvard University.

Samore said there appeared to be "a question mark" about whether local military commanders used the weapons "or whether this came down from orders from Damascus to test how much they could get away with."

Since the Syrian conflict erupted in 2011 - it has killed 70,000 people and created more than 1.2 million refugees - Obama has repeatedly shied away from deep U.S. involvement.

That stance is shared by top Pentagon officials, who have spoken publicly and privately of their concerns about the limits and risks of employing U.S. military force in the shattered country.

Whether Obama is now slowly moving toward a more activist approach is unclear.

Obama, without being specific, said that if Syria's chemical weapons use was more firmly established "that means that there are some options that we might not otherwise exercise that we would strongly consider."

White House spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said "our assistance to the Syrian opposition has been on an upward trajectory, and (Obama) has directed his national security team to identify additional measures so that we can continue to increase our assistance."

Obama has approved nonlethal aid to the Syrian opposition, but has thus far stopped short of providing arms.

He now faces criticism for softening a "red line" that seemed crystal clear when he said in August that the use of chemical weapons by Assad, or transfer of stockpiles to extremist groups would be unacceptable.

White House officials said they do not think the U.S. public is eager to get involved militarily in Syria.

"Setting aside instances when America has been attacked - the Japanese and al Qaeda - military action should always be something any president considers very seriously and deliberately and that's especially the case when it's not an attack on the United States," a senior White House official said.

A New York Times/CBS News poll released on Tuesday found that 62 percent of Americans believe the United States has no responsibility to do something about the fighting between Assad's forces and anti-government rebels.

Only 39 percent of respondents said they were following the Syrian violence closely, indicating that it is not among U.S. citizens' top concerns.

"I think the American people are kind of where the president is. You've got to have some definitive evidence and you've got to very careful about what you do," said Democratic strategist Bob Shrum, who managed John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign.

"The politics of this is not hard for the president. It's the policy that's hard," Shrum said.

ROOM FOR MANEUVER

Obama also has room for maneuver on Syria because Republican are divided over what to do, and - unlike with Iran's nuclear program - close U.S. Middle East ally Israel is not urging American action.

Hawkish Republican senators John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, said Obama's inaction was endangering U.S. national security interests and allies.

"There are many options at our disposal, including military options short of boots on the ground in Syria, that can make a positive impact on this crisis," they said in a statement responding to Obama's remarks.

But not all Republicans share that view. Departing from his party's frequent disparagement of the United Nations, Representative Harold Rogers of Kentucky replied when asked if Washington should arm the Syrian rebels: "It is such a muddled picture. I think probably we ought to be asking the U.N. to be involved."

The Republican divide "leads to an incoherent critique of the administration's policy," said Jon Alterman, director of the Middle East program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.

There is also "the long hang-over from Iraq" and the U.S. war there, Alterman said. "I don't know when that goes away."

Michael Oren, Israel's ambassador to the United States, said his country is not calling on Obama to act against Syria.

"We're not making any policy recommendations," Oren said in a telephone interview. "We think the issue is very complex."

At his news conference, Obama stressed the need for international consensus. Secretary of State John Kerry travels to Russia, which has backed Assad, for talks on Syria and other issues next week.

"If we end up rushing to judgment without hard, effective evidence, then we can find ourselves in the position where we can't mobilize the international community to support what we do," Obama said.

Said Alterman: "Obama is looking for an opportunity to be decisive" in Syria. "You could either see it as reluctance, or patience."

(Additional reporting by Patricia Zengerle, Mark Hosenball and Tabassum Zakaria; Editing by Alistair Bell and David Brunnstrom)
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СообщениеДобавлено: Среда, 1 Май 2013, 21:09:03    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/its-game-changing-president-barack-obama-says-us-has-evidence-that-president-bashar-assad-is-using-chemical-weapons-in-syria-8597069.html
It's game changing': President Barack Obama says US has evidence that President Bashar Assad is using chemical weapons in Syria

President Barack Obama has revealed there is now “some evidence” that chemical weapons were used inside Syria, an act he has previously called a “red line” for potential US intervention in the country.

At a news conference this afternoon the US president stated that although he doesn't know how or when they were used, new evidence has emerged that forms the strongest proof yet that chemical weapons have been deployed during the ongoing civil war.

Obama told reporters that he must now gather “all the facts” before deciding how to react, but repeated his statement that the use of chemical weapons would be “game changing” with "enormous consequences" in the region.

He specifically stated that there is “some evidence” that President Bashar Assad's government had used chemical weapons against his own people but made it clear that that is only a preliminary assessment based on intelligence information.

Obama went on to say that he has asked Pentagon for range of options if it is eventually proved beyond doubt that Assad used chemical weapons, adding that the international community has to be completely confident in the assessment before taking any action.

Obama said: “We don't have a chain of custody that establishes [exactly what happened],” before adding “[If it emerges that Syria used chemical weapons] we would have to rethink the range of options that are available to us.”

He added: “Obviously there are options to me that are on the shelf right now that we have not deployed,“ he said, noting that he had asked Pentagon planners last year for additional possibilities.

Obama’s talk of “red lines” and “enormous consequences” echoes the sentiments of Britain, France and Israel.

In Tehran, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said that use of chemical weapons in Syria would also be a “red line” for Iran, but suggested rebel forces should be investigated rather than the Islamic Republic's allies in Damascus.

The developments come just hours after 13 people were killed by a huge bomb blast in the Syrian capital Damascus, sowing fear and chaos in a busy commercial district of the capital for the second consecutive day.

Yesterday the Syrian prime minister narrowly escaped an assassination attempt after a car bomb struck near his convoy, a few miles away from today’s blast.

The bombings appear to be part of an accelerated campaign by opposition forces seeking to topple President Bashar Assad to strike at his heavily protected seat of power.

“I heard a very loud bang and then the ceiling collapsed on top of me,” said Zaher Nafeq, who owns a mobile phone shop in the Damascus Towers, a 28-floor office building. He was wounded in his hand and his mobile phone shop was badly damaged in the blast.

Syrian TV said Tuesday's explosion was caused by a “terrorist bombing” in the commercial district of Marjeh. Assad's regime refers to opposition fighters as “terrorists.”

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast, which the TV said also wounded 70 people. Car bombs and suicide attacks targeting Damascus and other cities that remain under government control in the third year of the conflict have been claimed in the past by the al-Qaida affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra group — one of scores of rebel factions fighting to oust Assad.

The target of Tuesday's attack was not immediately clear, although the explosion took place outside the former Interior Ministry building that was also damaged in the blast.

Ambulances rushed to the scene and Syrian state TV aired footage of fire trucks in central Marjeh Square and firefighters trying to extinguish a blaze that engulfed several cars and buildings. A man was seen lying on the ground in a pool of blood while another, apparently wounded, was seen being carried by civilians into a bus.

Inspecting the site of the blast, Interior Minister Mohammed al-Shaar, who himself escaped a car bomb that targeted his convoy in December, told reporters the back-to-back attacks in the capital were in response to the “victories and achievements scored by the Syrian Arab Army on the ground against terrorism.”

The government has waged an offensive in recent weeks, overrunning two rebel-held Damascus suburbs and a town outside the capital. Regime troops have also captured several villages near the border with Lebanon as part of their efforts to secure the strategic corridor running from Damascus to the Mediterranean coast, which is the heartland of the president's Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 14 people were killed and 65 wounded in Tuesday's blast. The group, which relies on a network on activists based in Syria, often gives different casualty tolls from the figures released by the government. The discrepancy could not immediately be reconciled.

Local residents said they heard gunfire in the area of the attack immediately after the 11 a.m. blast, apparently meant to disperse people and open the way for ambulances. The residents spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity, fearing reprisals from authorities for speaking to reporters.

The explosion underlined the tenuous security in the Syrian capital, just a day after a remotely detonated roadside bomb struck Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi's convoy. The premier escaped the assassination attempt unharmed, according to state TV.

But a government official said two people were killed and 11 wounded in the assassination attempt. The official spoke to the Associated Press news agency on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media.

The Observatory said Monday's bombing killed at least five people, including two of al-Halqi's bodyguards and one of the drivers in his convoy.

The bombings laid bare the vulnerability of Assad's regime and highlighted an accelerating campaign targeting government officials, from mid-level civil servants to the highest echelons of the Syrian regime.

Syria's conflict began with largely peaceful anti-government protests in March 2011, but has since morphed into a civil war that has killed more than 70,000 people, according to the United Nations.

Earlier today, Syrian troops battled opposition fighters near a military helicopter base in the northern province of Aleppo, killing 15 rebels in a single airstrike against their positions, according to Observatory director Rami Abdul-Rahman.

The rebels tried to storm the Mannagh base late Monday but the regime deployed fighter jets to the area, pounding rebel positions around the base, which is near Syria's border with Turkey, Abdul-Rahman said.

He added that fighting was also raging today around other airports in the country, including the Damascus International Airport just south of the capital.

In the north, rebels besieged military airport facilities, including Kweiras northeast of Aleppo city and the Nairab military base, adjacent to Aleppo's civilian airport, the country's second largest.

In neighbouring Idlib province, a government airstrike near the Bab al-Hawa border crossing with Turkey killed one child and wounded several more people, the Observatory said.

An Associated Press journalist near Reyhanli on the Turkish side of the frontier described a huge plume of black smoke and reported seeing wounded people being rushed by ambulance from the Syrian side to the Turkish control point.

Thousands of Syrian refugees live in a makeshift camp known as the Bab al-Hawa refugee camp near the border with Turkey.

Air power has proven to be Assad's greatest advantage in the civil war, and he has exploited it to push back rebel advances and prevent the opposition from setting up a rival government in the territory it has seized in the north.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Воскресенье, 5 Май 2013, 20:14:01    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://edition.cnn.com/2013/05/05/world/meast/syria-violence/index.html?hpt=hp_t1
Syria: Attack on military facility was a 'declaration of war' by Israel

Damascus, Syria (CNN) -- A Syrian official called an attack Sunday on the nation's military research facility a "declaration of war" by Israel.

In an exclusive interview with CNN hours after a series of massive explosions illuminated the predawn sky in Damascus, Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al Mekdad said the attack represented an alliance between Islamic terrorists and Israel.

"When they attack, this is a declaration of war. This is not something that is (new)," al Mekdad said. "We dealt with this on several occasions, and we retaliated the way we wanted, and the retaliation was always painful to Israel, and they will suffer again."

The Israeli military would not confirm or deny the Syrian claim that Israel had fired rockets that hit a research center in the Damascus suburb of Jamraya.
Syrian official: Israel has declared war

"We do not comment on these reports at all," an Israeli military representative said.

A report on Syrian state-run TV claimed that the Israeli rocket attack on the research center aided rebels, who have been battling government forces in the region.

After an emergency meeting of Syria's Cabinet on Sunday, Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi said on state television that the attack "opens the door wide open for all possibilities" but did not specify what those possibilities would be.

An Israeli Army official told CNN that two rocket interception batteries have been deployed to northern Israel.
...
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СообщениеДобавлено: Воскресенье, 5 Май 2013, 20:23:24    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://sana.sy/eng/21/2013/05/05/480697.htm
The Cabinet: The Israeli Aggression Opens the Door Wide for All Possibilities

May 05, 2013


DAMASCUS, (SANA)- The Cabinet held an extraodiinary session on Sunday chaired by Premier Dr. Wael al-Halqi, in which it denounced the criminal Israeli aggression against sites in Syria, affirming that this blatant aggression is violation of Syrian airspace, territories and sovereignty and a flagrant attack on the Syrian people's properties and resources.

The Cabinet said that the aggression was carried out in coordination with the terrorist groups which answer to foreign sides and was timed with an escalation of their desperate terrorist operations in various area in a bid to raise their morale and delay their approaching defeat, as these groups are breathing their last breaths.

The Cabinet underlined the strong link between the terrorist groups – such as the Takfiri groups and Jabhet al-Nusra – and Israel.

The Cabinet lauded the heroics of the Syrian Army in pursuing and eliminating terrorists and restoring security and stability, asserting that the major conspiracy led by Israel, the US, some western countries and their regional pawn doesn't just target Syria, but rather the entire Arab nation.

The Cabinet affirmed that Syria will emerge victorious over this war thanks to the steadfastness of its people and the solid support of its friends, stressing the need to rally forces to liberate the occupied Syrian Golan.

Premier al-Halqi said that terrorist attacks will not dissuade Syria and its people from resistance and steadfastness, adding that it has always been Syria's destiny to defend the Arab nation.

Al-Halqi stressed that the government is working to bolster the people's steadfastness on the economic, developmental and services levels, in addition to boosting the capabilities of the Syria Army.

He noted that national dialogue will continue in order to save Syria, lauding the solidarity between the people and the Army in the face of Syria's enemies.

Following the session, Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi read a statement issued by the Cabinet, in which he said that the Israeli aggression on sites in Syria opens the door wide for all the possibilities and shows an organic link between the Takfiri terrorist groups and the Israeli enemy, the Cabinet said in a statement on Sunday.

"The Israeli enemy committed early Sunday morning May 5th, 2013 a flagrant aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic using missiles to shell military facilities in a blatant violation of all the rules of the international law paying no heed to all the relevant commitments," the statement said.

"The Syrian government stresses that this aggression opens the door wide for all the possibilities, especially that it undoubtedly shows the scale of the organic link between the constituents of the war on Syria, along with their Takfiri terrorist tools, and the Zionism," al-Zoubi stressed.

The statement pointed out that that the Syrian government has long affirmed this link in terms of the aim, tools and means between the Takfiri thinking and the Zionism and the terrorism gangs and Jabhat al-Nusra, which is an offshoot of al-Qaeda in Syria.

It noted that Syria has offered lots of evidence and facts proving this link, the latest was this new aggression "which came at a time when our armed forces, backed by our people, are making more achievements in combating terrorism and the terrorists who come from various countries of the world and are funded by the entities of Arab disgrace."

The Cabinet stressed that with this aggression Israel has proved its link with the Takfiri terrorist groups, saying that "The international community should realize that the complications of what is happening in the region have become more dangerous after this aggression."

"The countries supporting Israel should know quite well that our people and state do not accept disgrace, and that Israel and its agents in the region can't stand alone and tamper with the regional security and the peoples' future," the statement added.

The Cabinet concluded its statement by saying that "The government stresses the necessity that the army continue its achievements in combating Israel's tools inside, and that it will always be its right to protect the homeland, the state and the people against any internal or external aggression by all means.

Afterwards, Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi answered a question by reporters by saying that Syria is a state that does not permit itself to be slighted nor does it tolerate infringements upon its sovereignty and national security, and those who infringe upon it sovereignty must consider their choices carefully and assume full responsibility.

Al-Zoubi stressed that Syria is not and will never be a punching bag for anybody, and if anyone has ever believed that, based on their miscalculations, then they are mistaken and should reconsider their calculations.

The Minister pointed out that Syrians are angry, and that this aggression offends all Syrians, adding that similar aggressions are perpetrated daily at the hands of terrorist groups in Syria.

Al-Zoubi questioned the timing and method of the attack, and why Israel received wounded terrorists and why these terrorists are carrying Israeli weapons.

Answering a question on whether Syria is paying for its support of the resistance, the Minister said that great choices have great prices, and national choices require national sacrifices, adding "we never were and never will regret or be sorry over our national and pan-Arab choices, at the forefront of which is the choice of resistance," asserting that Syria will never abandon the choice of resistance.

On the upcoming meeting of Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Barack Obama, al-Zoubi noted that Syria takes into consideration every positive international effort and initiative, but relies on the Armed Forces, the people and Syria's own resources in confronting terrorists.

He noted that it's well known, now more than ever, the number of terrorists who came from abroad, their level of armaments, and who supports and funds them and provides logistic, intelligence and communication support.

Al-Zoubi said that when the US speaks of "non-lethal support" and technical support, it means providing terrorists with communication devices and tech which allows them to locate sites and target them with their gunfire and missiles, while the US claims that this is non-lethal support, describing this policy as "one of the farces of the century… it's a farce when Turks and others provide them with chemical weapons."

Regarding Israeli media reports on shooting down Israeli planes, al-Zoubi said that there's no evidence to this and investigations are ongoing, with the military authorities investigating the details of the Israeli aggression.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Понедельник, 6 Май 2013, 10:54:16    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/05/us-syria-crisis-un-idUSBRE94409Z20130505
U.N. has testimony that Syrian rebels used sarin gas: investigator

GENEVA | Sun May 5, 2013 6:13pm EDT

(Reuters) - U.N. human rights investigators have gathered testimony from casualties of Syria's civil war and medical staff indicating that rebel forces have used the nerve agent sarin, one of the lead investigators said on Sunday.

The United Nations independent commission of inquiry on Syria has not yet seen evidence of government forces having used chemical weapons, which are banned under international law, said commission member Carla Del Ponte.

"Our investigators have been in neighboring countries interviewing victims, doctors and field hospitals and, according to their report of last week which I have seen, there are strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof of the use of sarin gas, from the way the victims were treated," Del Ponte said in an interview with Swiss-Italian television.

"This was use on the part of the opposition, the rebels, not by the government authorities," she added, speaking in Italian.

Del Ponte, a former Swiss attorney-general who also served as prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, gave no details as to when or where sarin may have been used.

The Geneva-based inquiry into war crimes and other human rights violations is separate from an investigation of the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria instigated by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, which has since stalled.

President Bashar al-Assad's government and the rebels accuse each another of carrying out three chemical weapon attacks, one near Aleppo and another near Damascus, both in March, and another in Homs in December.

The civil war began with anti-government protests in March 2011. The conflict has now claimed an estimated 70,000 lives and forced 1.2 million Syrian refugees to flee.

The United States has said it has "varying degrees of confidence" that sarin has been used by Syria's government on its people.

President Barack Obama last year declared that the use or deployment of chemical weapons by Assad would cross a "red line".
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СообщениеДобавлено: Четверг, 9 Май 2013, 07:44:14    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.inopressa.ru/article/09may2013/wsj/syria1.html
Соединенные Штаты получили предупреждение, что Россия планирует поставки оружия Сирии

Израиль предостерег США, что Россия вот-вот заключит сделку о поставках С-300 - современных ракетных ПВО - в Сирию, сообщает The Wall Street Journal. "Это оружие значительно увеличит возможности режима противостоять вмешательству в его гражданскую войну", - отмечают журналисты Джей Соломон, Адам Энтус и Джулиан Э.Барнс.

В среду чиновники США заявили, что анализируют информацию, предоставленную Израилем, но воздержались от ответа на вопрос, считают ли они сами, что эти поставки будут осуществлены в ближайшее время.

По словам американских чиновников, правительство Асада пытается закупить российские системы С-300 еще со времен, когда президентом США был Джордж У.Буш. "Западные державы просят правительство Путина не осуществлять поставки", - добавляет издание.

Если верить информации, предоставленной на днях Израилем, Сирия переводит деньги по контракту с Москвой от 2010 года на закупки 4 батарей ПВО за 900 млн долларов. "Они ссылаются на финансовые транзакции сирийского правительства, в том числе одну, которая была проведена в текущем году через российский банк ВЭБ", - говорится в статье.

Газета пересказывает информацию, полученную от Израиля: "Пакет включает 6 пусковых установок и 144 боевых ракеты дальностью 125 миль, первая партия может поступить в ближайшие 3 месяца, поставка завершится к концу года, ожидается, что Россия пришлет две группы инструкторов, которые научат сирийских военных обращаться с системой".

"Если правительство Путина осуществит поставки, это будет означать значительную эскалацию борьбы Москвы и Вашингтона за Сирию", - пишет газета. В последние годы Россия уже активизировала поставки систем ПВО в Сирию: отгрузила установки "Панцирь-С1", начала модернизацию других установок (устаревшие "аналоги SA-3" были превращены в мобильные и компьютеризированные ЗРК "Печора-2М").

США особенно опасаются другой системы ПВО российского производства - SA-5 по классификации НАТО. "Ракеты SA-5 могут сбивать американские самолеты, вылетающие с ключевой базы НАТО - с Кипра", - поясняет издание. Генерал Мартин Демпси неофициально известил Белый дом, что для подавления сирийской ПВО потребуются несколько недель бомбежек.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Четверг, 9 Май 2013, 07:47:04    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

Это затруднит действия Израиля. В той мере в какой Сирия попытается эти комплексы развернуть, и в той мере в какой Израиль их попытается разбомбить.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Среда, 22 Май 2013, 15:48:51    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

Оба-на! Сенат USA проголосовал за поставкy оружия сирийской оппозиции.

http://www.foreign.senate.gov/press/chair/release/syria-transition-support-act-introduced-by-menendez-corker-passes-senate-foreign-relations-committee-
Syria Transition Support Act Introduced by Menendez, Corker Passes Senate Foreign Relations Committee
Bipartisan Legislation Approved by a Vote of 15 to 3


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

adam_sharon@foreign.senate.gov

Bill Provides for Lethal Aid and Training to Vetted Syrian Opposition, Sanctions Weapon Sales and Petroleum Sales to the Assad Regime, While Delivering Humanitarian Assistance and Planning for a Post-Assad Syria

WASHINGTON, DC – The Syria Transition Support Act, bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Ranking Member Bob Corker (R-TN) passed the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The legislation plans for a post-Assad Syria by offering humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people, limited lethal and non-lethal assistance and training to vetted Syrian groups.

“The situation in Syria is critical for Syrians, for the region, and for the U.S. effort to counter extremism. More than 80,000 Syrians have died in the last two years, the number of refugees now tops 1.5 million; the conflict is spilling over into Lebanon and Iraq; and extremists groups with links to al-Qaeda are exploiting the conflict and gaining ground in a state with large chemical weapon stockpiles. The time to act and turn the tide against Assad is now. This legislation will provide critical support to the Syrian opposition through provision of military assistance, training, and additional humanitarian support.”

"Given the risks to the U.S. and the region from an extremist takeover in Syria, I thank my colleagues for advancing our bill that seeks a better outcome by establishing a more focused U.S. strategy without new spending or authorizing American military force. This effort has always been about more than the arming and training of vetted opposition groups; it is about shifting the momentum on the ground toward moderate forces while helping them build consensus for a new government post Assad,” said Corker. “In order for the necessary political transition to take place, moderate forces must gain the upper hand, and Assad must doubt his chances of survival. This bill moves that effort down the road in a serious, measured way, so I hope it is something my congressional colleagues and the president will embrace. ”

The Menendez-Corker legislation includes six key elements.

Authority to provide arms, military training and non-lethal supplies to the Syrian armed opposition: Groups that have gone through a thorough vetting process by the U.S. government, meeting certain criteria on human-rights, terrorism, and non-proliferation, would be eligible. A presidential waiver is included allowing for the distribution of anti-aircraft defensive systems with strict limitations.

Creation of a $250 million transition fund each year through FY2015 drawn from funds otherwise appropriated for regional transition support: To assist the civilian opposition in early transition institution building and maintenance of existing institutions, such as preserving security institutions, preventing regional spillover, promoting government formation, supporting transition justice, and reconciliation efforts.

Sanctions on arms and oil sales to Assad: Targeting any person that the President of the United States determines has knowingly participated in or facilitated a transaction related to the sale or transfer of military equipment, arms, petroleum, or petroleum products to the Assad regime.

Broad authority for humanitarian assistance: To ensure the administration is not hampered in its efforts to provide humanitarian aid to the Syrian people. This section does not authorize any new or additional funding.

Administration strategy: Requiring the administration to work with Congress and keep it fully apprised of strategy towards Syria, including working through the international community and Russia to find a political settlement.

Amendment to the Syria Accountability Act: To allow for sanctions removal once a transitional government is in place and certain terrorism and WMD criteria have been met.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Пятница, 14 Июнь 2013, 13:23:50    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.kommersant.ru/news/2211227
Белый дом: до 150 человек погибли в результате применения химоружия в Сирии
Правительство Сирии убило до 150 человек, используя химоружие против оппозиции, сообщает агентство РИА «Новости», ссылаясь на слова советника президента США по национальной безопасности Бена Родса. «После тщательного рассмотрения, наше разведывательное сообщество оценивает, что режим Асада использовал химическое оружие, применяя нервно-паралитический газ зарин, в малых масштабах и во множестве случаев в прошлом году против оппозиции. Наше разведывательное сообщество имеет высокую степень уверенности в этой оценке, учитывая наличие многочисленных и независимых источников информации. Разведывательное сообщество оценивает, что от 100 до 150 человек погибли от зафиксированных в Сирии до настоящего момента атак с помощью химического оружия, но данные о пострадавших могут быть неполными», — заявил 13 июня Бен Родс.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Пятница, 14 Июнь 2013, 13:35:41    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/13/syria-chemical-weapons-white-house-text
White House statement on Syrian regime chemicals weapons - full text

Statement by Ben Rhodes, the US deputy national security advisor for strategic communications, on chemical weapons

Barack Obama at a White House press conference
The US intelligence assessment came at the request of the president. Photograph: Larry Downing/Reuters

At the President's direction, the United States Government has been closely monitoring the potential use of chemical weapons within Syria. Following the assessment made by our intelligence community in April, the President directed the intelligence community to seek credible and corroborated information to build on that assessment and establish the facts with some degree of certainty. Today, we are providing an updated version of our assessment to Congress and to the public.

The Syrian government's refusal to grant access to the United Nations to investigate any and all credible allegations of chemical weapons use has prevented a comprehensive investigation as called for by the international community. The Assad regime could prove that its request for an investigation was not just a diversionary tactic by granting the UN fact finding mission immediate and unfettered access to conduct on-site investigations to help reveal the truth about chemical weapons use in Syria. While pushing for a UN investigation, the United States has also been working urgently with our partners and allies as well as individuals inside Syria, including the Syrian opposition, to procure, share, and evaluate information associated with reports of chemical weapons use so that we can establish the facts and determine what took place.

Following a deliberative review, our intelligence community assesses that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons, including the nerve agent sarin, on a small scale against the opposition multiple times in the last year. Our intelligence community has high confidence in that assessment given multiple, independent streams of information. The intelligence community estimates that 100 to 150 people have died from detected chemical weapons attacks in Syria to date; however, casualty data is likely incomplete. While the lethality of these attacks make up only a small portion of the catastrophic loss of life in Syria, which now stands at more than 90,000 deaths, the use of chemical weapons violates international norms and crosses clear red lines that have existed within the international community for decades. We believe that the Assad regime maintains control of these weapons. We have no reliable, corroborated reporting to indicate that the opposition in Syria has acquired or used chemical weapons.

The body of information used to make this intelligence assessment includes reporting regarding Syrian officials planning and executing regime chemical weapons attacks; reporting that includes descriptions of the time, location, and means of attack; and descriptions of physiological symptoms that are consistent with exposure to a chemical weapons agent. Some open source reports from social media outlets from Syrian opposition groups and other media sources are consistent with the information we have obtained regarding chemical weapons use and exposure. The assessment is further supported by laboratory analysis of physiological samples obtained from a number of individuals, which revealed exposure to sarin. Each positive result indicates that an individual was exposed to sarin, but it does not tell us how or where the individuals were exposed or who was responsible for the dissemination.

We are working with allies to present a credible, evidentiary case to share with the international community and the public. Since the creation of the UN fact finding mission, we have provided two briefings to Dr. Åke Sellström, the head of the mission. We will also be providing a letter to UN Secretary General Ban, calling the UN's attention to our updated intelligence assessment and specific incidents of alleged chemical weapons use. We request that the UN mission include these incidents in its ongoing investigation and report, as appropriate, on its findings. We will present additional information and continue to update Dr. Sellström as new developments emerge.

The President has been clear that the use of chemical weapons – or the transfer of chemical weapons to terrorist groups – is a red line for the United States, as there has long been an established norm within the international community against the use of chemical weapons. Our intelligence community now has a high confidence assessment that chemical weapons have been used on a small scale by the Assad regime in Syria. The President has said that the use of chemical weapons would change his calculus, and it has.

Our decision making has already been guided by the April intelligence assessment and by the regime's escalation of horrific violence against its citizens. Following on the credible evidence that the regime has used chemical weapons against the Syrian people, the President has augmented the provision of non-lethal assistance to the civilian opposition, and also authorized the expansion of our assistance to the Supreme Military Council (SMC), and we will be consulting with Congress on these matters in the coming weeks. This effort is aimed at strengthening the effectiveness of the SMC, and helping to coordinate the provision of assistance by the United States and other partners and allies. Put simply, the Assad regime should know that its actions have led us to increase the scope and scale of assistance that we provide to the opposition, including direct support to the SMC. These efforts will increase going forward.

The United States and the international community have a number of other legal, financial, diplomatic, and military responses available. We are prepared for all contingencies, and we will make decisions on our own timeline. Any future action we take will be consistent with our national interest, and must advance our objectives, which include achieving a negotiated political settlement to establish an authority that can provide basic stability and administer state institutions; protecting the rights of all Syrians; securing unconventional and advanced conventional weapons; and countering terrorist activity.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Четверг, 20 Июнь 2013, 09:30:25    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.mid.ru/BDOMP/Brp_4.nsf/arh/584F96332B1193B244257B870023C1B1?OpenDocument
Комментарий Департамента информации и печати МИД России в связи с убийством боевиками сирийской вооруженной оппозиции подростка в Алеппо

1181-11-06-2013


С возмущением восприняли сообщения об убийстве в Алеппо боевиками сирийской вооруженной оппозиции 15-летнего подростка, обвиненного в «богохульстве». Особую тревогу вызывает демонстративный характер этого преступления, представленного бандитами как казнь по религиозному мотиву. Подобные провокационные кощунственные акты приводят лишь к обострению и без того непростой обстановки в Сирии и во всем регионе в сфере конфессиональных отношений.

Все стороны сирийского конфликта должны неукоснительно соблюдать права человека и нормы международного гуманитарного права. При этом исходим из того, что те, кто поддерживает или симпатизирует сирийским боевикам, наконец воспользуются своим влиянием с тем, чтобы прекратить продолжающуюся череду гуманитарных преступлений вооруженной оппозиции, включая похищения, пытки и убийства гражданских лиц.

Таким преступлениям не может быть никакого оправдания.

Произошедшая очередная трагедия лишь подтверждает насущную необходимость скорейшего политического урегулирования конфликта в Сирии, нормализации положения дел в гуманитарно-правочеловеческой сфере, включая прекращение любых насильственных действий в отношении мирного населения этой страны.


11 июня 2013 года
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СообщениеДобавлено: Вторник, 2 Июль 2013, 09:07:32    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.newsru.com/world/02jul2013/syr.html
Видео из Сирии: боевики обезглавили католического священника на глазах у таинственных людей, говорящих по-русски

Видео из Сирии: боевики обезглавили католического священника на глазах у таинственных людей, говорящих по-русски
Католический священник-францисканец и как минимум еще один человек из его окружения были казнены в Сирии боевиками за, предположительно, сотрудничество с представителями режима президента Башара Асада
Есть и еще один интересный момент. За кадром периодически звучит русская речь. "Давай не кучкуйтесь! Э!" - призывает неизвестный, когда к обезглавленному телу священнослужителя бросается толпа

Католический священник-францисканец и как минимум еще один человек из его окружения были казнены в Сирии боевиками за, предположительно, сотрудничество с представителями режима президента Башара Асада. Экзекуцию убийцы по традиции сняли на видео, после чего кровавый ролик, способный ужаснуть не менее, чем видео про террориста-каннибала, выложили в Сеть.

О гибели в Сирии отца Франсуа Мурада официальный Ватикан сообщил еще 24 июня. Однако существенных подробностей пресс-служба Римской католической церкви не приводила.

"Отец Франсуа после рукоположения в сан священника содействовал возведению в деревне Гассаньех (северная Сирия. - Прим. NEWSru.com) мужского монастыря Святого Симеона Столпника. После начала гражданской войны монастырь был разрушен в результате бомбежки, и отец Франсуа переехал в женский монастырь Кустодии Святой земли, дабы помочь сестрам и прихожанам", - говорится в сообщении новостного агентства Ватикана.

Теперь же стали известны подробности. Несколько дней назад в Сети появился видеоролик из, как предполагается, Гассаньеха, в котором запечатлена казнь двух мужчин, один из которых очень похож на отца Франсуа. Если верить субтитрам на английском языке, наложенным на видео в одном из вариантов ролика, опубликованном на портале Live Leaks (18+), священнослужителя приговорили к смерти за связь с правительственными войсками.

Казнь на глазах у детей

"У них в телефонах есть номера военных…" - гласит перевод выступления террориста средних лет, взявшего на себя роль и судьи, и палача. Он рассказывает толпе собравшихся, что вина двоих пленников доказана, но есть еще третий захваченный человек, в отношении которого должно быть проведено дополнительное расследование. "Потому его мы казним позже", - объясняет террорист, предположительно, входящий в группировку "Джабхат ан-Нусра", связанную с "Аль-Каидой".

Затем под крики "Аллах Акбар" он берет нож и резкими пилящими движениями отделяет голову от тела первой жертвы - отца Франсуа. Затем поднимает ее, показывая толпе, кладет на тело покойного и переходит ко второму пленнику. С ним он проделывает то же самое. Стоит отметить, что ни один из казненных мужчин не проронил ни слова ни во время вынесения вердикта, ни даже в тот момент, когда им заживо отрезали голову.

Интересно, что среди нескольких десятков мужчин, пришедших посмотреть на казнь - на записи видны и вооруженные люди в одеяниях цвета хаки, и ничем не примечательные личности в гражданской одежде - можно разглядеть достаточно большое число детей. Некоторым на вид не более 7-8 лет, при этом малыши без тени сомнений подходят к телам убитых и с интересом разглядывают их. Впрочем, есть немало свидетельств того, что сирийские боевики целенаправленно приучают детей к подобной жестокости.

"Давай не кучкуйтесь!"

Есть и еще один интересный момент. За кадром периодически звучит русская речь. "Давай не кучкуйтесь! Э!" - призывает неизвестный, когда к обезглавленному телу священнослужителя бросается толпа, чтобы крупным планом заснять на мобильные телефоны результат казни. В этом тоже нет ничего удивительного - информация об участии чеченских террористов на стороне сирийских боевиков уже не раз подтверждалась в том числе наличием соответствующих видеозаписей, хотя ее и опровергал глава Чечни Рамзан Кадыров.

"Мир должен понимать, что оружие, направляемое боевикам Западом, используется для убийств сирийского народа", - цитирует Syria Report кустода Святой Земли Пьербатисту Пиццабаллу.

По информации издания, после того, как боевики ворвались в католический монастырь, в котором находился отец Франсуа, они разграбили его и разрушили. О судьбе других жителей обители ничего не известно. Что касается проживавших поблизости мирных граждан, порядка четырех тысяч человек бежали из этого района, сообщает Syria Report.
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СообщениеДобавлено: Среда, 11 Сентябрь 2013, 18:24:43    Заголовок сообщения: Ответить с цитатой

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/running-transcript-president-obamas-sept-10-speech-on-syria/2013/09/10/a8826aa6-1a2e-11e3-8685-5021e0c41964_story.html
FULL TRANSCRIPT: President Obama’s Sept. 10 speech on Syria
By Washington Post Staff, Wednesday, September 11, 3:08 AM

President Obama delivered the following remarks making the case for a military strike against the Syrian government on Sept. 10, 2013, at the White House.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: My fellow Americans, tonight I want to talk to you about Syria -- why it matters, and where we go from here.

Over the past two years, what began as a series of peaceful protests against the repressive regime of Bashar al-Assad has turned into a brutal civil war. Over 100,000 people have been killed. Millions have fled the country. In that time, America has worked with allies to provide humanitarian support, to help the moderate opposition, and to shape a political settlement. But I have resisted calls for military action, because we cannot resolve someone else’s civil war through force, particularly after a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The situation profoundly changed, though, on August 21st, when Assad’s government gassed to death over a thousand people, including hundreds of children. The images from this massacre are sickening: Men, women, children lying in rows, killed by poison gas. Others foaming at the mouth, gasping for breath. A father clutching his dead children, imploring them to get up and walk. On that terrible night, the world saw in gruesome detail the terrible nature of chemical weapons, and why the overwhelming majority of humanity has declared them off-limits -- a crime against humanity, and a violation of the laws of war.

This was not always the case. In World War I, American GIs were among the many thousands killed by deadly gas in the trenches of Europe. In World War II, the Nazis used gas to inflict the horror of the Holocaust. Because these weapons can kill on a mass scale, with no distinction between soldier and infant, the civilized world has spent a century working to ban them. And in 1997, the United States Senate overwhelmingly approved an international agreement prohibiting the use of chemical weapons, now joined by 189 governments that represent 98 percent of humanity.

On August 21st, these basic rules were violated, along with our sense of common humanity. No one disputes that chemical weapons were used in Syria. The world saw thousands of videos, cell phone pictures, and social media accounts from the attack, and humanitarian organizations told stories of hospitals packed with people who had symptoms of poison gas.

Moreover, we know the Assad regime was responsible. In the days leading up to August 21st, we know that Assad’s chemical weapons personnel prepared for an attack near an area where they mix sarin gas. They distributed gasmasks to their troops. Then they fired rockets from a regime-controlled area into 11 neighborhoods that the regime has been trying to wipe clear of opposition forces. Shortly after those rockets landed, the gas spread, and hospitals filled with the dying and the wounded. We know senior figures in Assad’s military machine reviewed the results of the attack, and the regime increased their shelling of the same neighborhoods in the days that followed. We’ve also studied samples of blood and hair from people at the site that tested positive for sarin.

When dictators commit atrocities, they depend upon the world to look the other way until those horrifying pictures fade from memory. But these things happened. The facts cannot be denied. The question now is what the United States of America, and the international community, is prepared to do about it. Because what happened to those people -- to those children -- is not only a violation of international law, it’s also a danger to our security.

Let me explain why. If we fail to act, the Assad regime will see no reason to stop using chemical weapons. As the ban against these weapons erodes, other tyrants will have no reason to think twice about acquiring poison gas, and using them. Over time, our troops would again face the prospect of chemical warfare on the battlefield. And it could be easier for terrorist organizations to obtain these weapons, and to use them to attack civilians.

If fighting spills beyond Syria’s borders, these weapons could threaten allies like Turkey, Jordan, and Israel. And a failure to stand against the use of chemical weapons would weaken prohibitions against other weapons of mass destruction, and embolden Assad’s ally, Iran -- which must decide whether to ignore international law by building a nuclear weapon, or to take a more peaceful path.

This is not a world we should accept. This is what’s at stake. And that is why, after careful deliberation, I determined that it is in the national security interests of the United States to respond to the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons through a targeted military strike. The purpose of this strike would be to deter Assad from using chemical weapons, to degrade his regime’s ability to use them, and to make clear to the world that we will not tolerate their use.

That’s my judgment as Commander-in-Chief. But I’m also the President of the world’s oldest constitutional democracy. So even though I possess the authority to order military strikes, I believed it was right, in the absence of a direct or imminent threat to our security, to take this debate to Congress. I believe our democracy is stronger when the President acts with the support of Congress. And I believe that America acts more effectively abroad when we stand together.

This is especially true after a decade that put more and more war-making power in the hands of the President, and more and more burdens on the shoulders of our troops, while sidelining the people’s representatives from the critical decisions about when we use force.

Now, I know that after the terrible toll of Iraq and Afghanistan, the idea of any military action, no matter how limited, is not going to be popular. After all, I’ve spent four and a half years working to end wars, not to start them. Our troops are out of Iraq. Our troops are coming home from Afghanistan. And I know Americans want all of us in Washington

-- especially me -- to concentrate on the task of building our nation here at home: putting people back to work, educating our kids, growing our middle class.

It’s no wonder, then, that you’re asking hard questions. So let me answer some of the most important questions that I’ve heard from members of Congress, and that I’ve read in letters that you’ve sent to me.

First, many of you have asked, won’t this put us on a slippery slope to another war? One man wrote to me that we are “still recovering from our involvement in Iraq.” A veteran put it more bluntly: “This nation is sick and tired of war.”

My answer is simple: I will not put American boots on the ground in Syria. I will not pursue an open-ended action like Iraq or Afghanistan. I will not pursue a prolonged air campaign like Libya or Kosovo. This would be a targeted strike to achieve a clear objective: deterring the use of chemical weapons, and degrading Assad’s capabilities.

Others have asked whether it’s worth acting if we don’t take out Assad. As some members of Congress have said, there’s no point in simply doing a “pinprick” strike in Syria.

Let me make something clear: The United States military doesn’t do pinpricks. Even a limited strike will send a message to Assad that no other nation can deliver. I don’t think we should remove another dictator with force -- we learned from Iraq that doing so makes us responsible for all that comes next. But a targeted strike can make Assad, or any other dictator, think twice before using chemical weapons.

Other questions involve the dangers of retaliation. We don’t dismiss any threats, but the Assad regime does not have the ability to seriously threaten our military. Any other retaliation they might seek is in line with threats that we face every day. Neither Assad nor his allies have any interest in escalation that would lead to his demise. And our ally, Israel, can defend itself with overwhelming force, as well as the unshakeable support of the United States of America.

Many of you have asked a broader question: Why should we get involved at all in a place that’s so complicated, and where -- as one person wrote to me -- “those who come after Assad may be enemies of human rights?”

It’s true that some of Assad’s opponents are extremists. But al Qaeda will only draw strength in a more chaotic Syria if people there see the world doing nothing to prevent innocent civilians from being gassed to death. The majority of the Syrian people -- and the Syrian opposition we work with -- just want to live in peace, with dignity and freedom. And the day after any military action, we would redouble our efforts to achieve a political solution that strengthens those who reject the forces of tyranny and extremism.

Finally, many of you have asked: Why not leave this to other countries, or seek solutions short of force? As several people wrote to me, “We should not be the world’s policeman.”

I agree, and I have a deeply held preference for peaceful solutions. Over the last two years, my administration has tried diplomacy and sanctions, warning and negotiations -- but chemical weapons were still used by the Assad regime.

However, over the last few days, we’ve seen some encouraging signs. In part because of the credible threat of U.S. military action, as well as constructive talks that I had with President Putin, the Russian government has indicated a willingness to join with the international community in pushing Assad to give up his chemical weapons. The Assad regime has now admitted that it has these weapons, and even said they’d join the Chemical Weapons Convention, which prohibits their use.

It’s too early to tell whether this offer will succeed, and any agreement must verify that the Assad regime keeps its commitments. But this initiative has the potential to remove the threat of chemical weapons without the use of force, particularly because Russia is one of Assad’s strongest allies.

I have, therefore, asked the leaders of Congress to postpone a vote to authorize the use of force while we pursue this diplomatic path. I’m sending Secretary of State John Kerry to meet his Russian counterpart on Thursday, and I will continue my own discussions with President Putin. I’ve spoken to the leaders of two of our closest allies, France and the United Kingdom, and we will work together in consultation with Russia and China to put forward a resolution at the U.N. Security Council requiring Assad to give up his chemical weapons, and to ultimately destroy them under international control. We’ll also give U.N. inspectors the opportunity to report their findings about what happened on August 21st. And we will continue to rally support from allies from Europe to the Americas -- from Asia to the Middle East -- who agree on the need for action.

Meanwhile, I’ve ordered our military to maintain their current posture to keep the pressure on Assad, and to be in a position to respond if diplomacy fails. And tonight, I give thanks again to our military and their families for their incredible strength and sacrifices.

My fellow Americans, for nearly seven decades, the United States has been the anchor of global security. This has meant doing more than forging international agreements -- it has meant enforcing them. The burdens of leadership are often heavy, but the world is a better place because we have borne them.

And so, to my friends on the right, I ask you to reconcile your commitment to America’s military might with a failure to act when a cause is so plainly just. To my friends on the left, I ask you to reconcile your belief in freedom and dignity for all people with those images of children writhing in pain, and going still on a cold hospital floor. For sometimes resolutions and statements of condemnation are simply not enough.

Indeed, I’d ask every member of Congress, and those of you watching at home tonight, to view those videos of the attack, and then ask: What kind of world will we live in if the United States of America sees a dictator brazenly violate international law with poison gas, and we choose to look the other way?

Franklin Roosevelt once said, “Our national determination to keep free of foreign wars and foreign entanglements cannot prevent us from feeling deep concern when ideals and principles that we have cherished are challenged.” Our ideals and principles, as well as our national security, are at stake in Syria, along with our leadership of a world where we seek to ensure that the worst weapons will never be used.

America is not the world’s policeman. Terrible things happen across the globe, and it is beyond our means to right every wrong. But when, with modest effort and risk, we can stop children from being gassed to death, and thereby make our own children safer over the long run, I believe we should act. That’s what makes America different. That’s what makes us exceptional. With humility, but with resolve, let us never lose sight of that essential truth.

Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.
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http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/12/opinion/putin-plea-for-caution-from-russia-on-syria.html?_r=0
A Plea for Caution From Russia
By VLADIMIR V. PUTIN

MOSCOW — RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies.

Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization — the United Nations — was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again.

The United Nations’ founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America’s consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades.

No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.

The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.

Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.

Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.

From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.

No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.

It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.”

But force has proved ineffective and pointless. Afghanistan is reeling, and no one can say what will happen after international forces withdraw. Libya is divided into tribes and clans. In Iraq the civil war continues, with dozens killed each day. In the United States, many draw an analogy between Iraq and Syria, and ask why their government would want to repeat recent mistakes.

No matter how targeted the strikes or how sophisticated the weapons, civilian casualties are inevitable, including the elderly and children, whom the strikes are meant to protect.

The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded.

We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement.

A new opportunity to avoid military action has emerged in the past few days. The United States, Russia and all members of the international community must take advantage of the Syrian government’s willingness to place its chemical arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction. Judging by the statements of President Obama, the United States sees this as an alternative to military action.

I welcome the president’s interest in continuing the dialogue with Russia on Syria. We must work together to keep this hope alive, as we agreed to at the Group of 8 meeting in Lough Erne in Northern Ireland in June, and steer the discussion back toward negotiations.

If we can avoid force against Syria, this will improve the atmosphere in international affairs and strengthen mutual trust. It will be our shared success and open the door to cooperation on other critical issues.

My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

Vladimir V. Putin is the president of Russia.
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http://kremlin.ru/news/19113
Ответы на вопросы журналистов

31 августа 2013 года, 14:00 Владивосток

Ключевые слова: внешняя политика, регионы, Сирия, Приморский край, Хабаровский край, Амурская область, Еврейская автономная область
Владимир Путин ответил на вопросы журналистов.

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Ответы на вопросы журналистов 31 августа 2013 года Владивосток
Ответы на вопросы журналистов 31 августа 2013 года Владивосток

ВОПРОС: Владимир Владимирович, Вы совершаете рабочую поездку уже практически неделю – Сибирь и Дальний Восток. Это вызвано непростыми погодными условиями и их последствиями или чем-то ещё?

В.ПУТИН: Это вызвано прежде всего большой значимостью Сибири и Дальнего Востока для России.

Это в целом была плановая поездка, но, разумеется, после того, как начались известные тяжёлые события, связанные с паводками, с наводнениями, пришлось конфигурацию этой поездки несколько изменить и больше времени уделить именно этим проблемам.

И я считаю, что, разумеется, мы сделали правильно. Большое количество министров Правительства Российской Федерации сюда приехало. И когда люди прямо на местах своими глазами видят, что происходит, с какими трудностями люди сталкиваются, то тогда и необходимые решения принимаются легче и более взвешенно.

Я уверен, что те решения, которые мы сегодня в результате трёхдневной работы здесь почти всего Правительства наметили, являются оптимальными. И Вы слышали об этих цифрах, они, в общем, должны закрыть основные проблемы граждан.

Самое главное заключается в том, чтобы всё это было реализовано вовремя, в срок и качественно.

ВОПРОС: Вы говорите о поездке на Дальний Восток, но Сирия сейчас тоже весьма актуальна. Всё дело в том, что накануне британский парламент принял решение и проголосовал против военного вмешательства, и некоторые страны, в том числе ФРГ и даже альянс НАТО, выражали негативное отношение по поводу военного вмешательства в Сирии. Для Вас, вообще, это ожидаемо было – само решение британского парламента? И что Вы думаете по этому поводу?

В.ПУТИН: Скажу откровенно, для меня это полная неожиданность. Я думаю, что вы все и я в том числе, мы за последние годы привыкли к тому, что в западном сообществе всё принимается без особых дискуссий – во всяком случае, внешне так всегда выглядит – и в соответствии с пожеланиями и позицией главного партнёра, то есть Соединённых Штатов Америки.

Если на этот раз какой-то сбой произошёл, то, повторяю, для меня это неожиданно, и более того, я даже удивлён этой позицией.

С другой стороны, это всё-таки говорит, видимо, о том, что и в Великобритании, хотя это главный, основной геополитический союзник Соединённых Штатов вообще в мире, я думаю, и в Европе тем более, – что даже там есть люди, которые руководствуются национальными интересами, здравым смыслом, дорожат своим суверенитетом.

Но и, кроме всего прочего, ведь это ещё и результат анализа того, что произошло за последние, предыдущие годы. Я имею в виду те трагические события, которые произошли в регионе Ближнего Востока, в других странах.

И несмотря на заявленные цели, всё-таки достижение этих целей ещё очень проблематично: я имею в виду и Афганистан, и тем более Ирак, Ливию и другие страны. А что касается Египта, мы знаем, что там происходит. Поэтому я думаю, не думаю – уверен, что люди анализируют происходящие события, делают выводы и соответствующим образом реагируют.

ВОПРОС: Владимир Владимирович, скажите, пожалуйста, Вы лично как считаете, кто применил химическое оружие в Сирии? И расскажите о Вашей оценке ситуации, которая сложилась в связи с этим в этой стране.

В.ПУТИН: Мы давно ведём дискуссию с нашими американскими партнёрами по этому вопросу. Вы знаете нашу позицию.

Что касается возможного применения оружия массового уничтожения, любого оружия массового уничтожения, включая и химическое оружие, то наша позиция является последовательной. Мы категорические противники, мы осуждаем и, соответственно, если это будет доказано, примем консолидированное участие в разработке мер противодействия подобным проявлениям.

Что касается данного случая. Как известно, и раньше сирийское правительство обращалось к международному сообществу с просьбой проинспектировать, как они считали, применение боевиками химических средств поражения людей. Но это, к сожалению, не было сделано. Реакция последовала только после 21-го числа, после того, как были в очередной раз применены эти средства.

Какая моя оценка? Здравый смысл говорит сам за себя. Сирийские правительственные войска наступают. В некоторых регионах они окружили повстанцев. В этих условиях давать козырь тем, кто постоянно призывает к внешнему военному вмешательству, – просто дурь несусветная. Это не соответствует вообще никакой логике, да ещё в день приезда наблюдателей ООН.

Поэтому я убеждён, что это не более чем провокация тех, кто хочет втянуть другие страны в сирийский конфликт, кто хочет добиться поддержки со стороны могущественных участников международной деятельности, прежде всего, конечно, Соединённых Штатов. У меня в этом сомнений нет.

Что касается позиции наших американских коллег, друзей, которые утверждают, что правительственные войска применили оружие массового уничтожения, в данном случае химическое оружие, и говорят, что у них есть такие доказательства, пусть они тогда их предъявят инспекторам ООН и в Совет Безопасности. Ссылки на то, что у них такие доказательства есть, но они секретные, они никому не могут их представить, не выдерживают никакой критики.

Это просто неуважение к своим партнёрам и к участникам международной деятельности. Если есть доказательства, они должны быть предъявлены. Если они не предъявлены, значит, их нет. Ссылка на то, что это какие-то очередные перехваты каких-то переговоров, которые ничего не доказывают, не могут быть положены в основу принятия таких фундаментальных решений, как применение силы в отношении суверенного государства.

ВОПРОС: Скажите, пожалуйста, у Вас за последнее время было много важных телефонных переговоров с Премьером Великобритании, с Канцлером ФРГ, с Президентом Ирана. А были у Вас переговоры по Сирии с американским Президентом Бараком Обамой? И если были, то о чём договорились, а если нет, может быть, прямо сейчас хотите ему что-нибудь передать?

В.ПУТИН: Спасибо Вам за посреднические услуги, за предложение посреднических услуг.

Действительно, у меня были переговоры и с Канцлером ФРГ, с Премьер-министром Великобритании, с Премьером Турции, с Президентом Ирана. Мы с Президентом Соединённых Штатов на «восьмёрке» эту проблему, конечно, тоже обсуждали. И, кстати, тогда договорились о том, что вместе будем способствовать проведению мирных переговоров в Женеве, это так называемая «Женева-2».

И американцы брали на себя обязанность привезти на эти переговоры вооружённую оппозицию. Но это сложный процесс, я понимаю, и, судя по всему, им это не удаётся. Но за последнее время, особенно после новых обвинений правительства Сирии в применении химического оружия, таких переговоров у меня с Президентом Соединённых Штатов не было.

Что касается нашей позиции – она известна. Что бы я сказал? Даже не знаю. Знаете, я бы прежде всего обратился к нему не как к своему коллеге, не как к Президенту США и главе государства, а как к лауреату Нобелевской премии мира. Нам нужно вспомнить, что происходило за последнее десятилетие, сколько раз Соединённые Штаты были инициаторами вооружённых конфликтов в разных регионах мира. И разве это решило хоть одну проблему?

Афганистан, я уже говорил, Ирак... Ведь нет ни успокоения, нет там демократии никакой, к чему якобы стремились наши партнёры. Нет элементарного гражданского мира и равновесия. На всё это нужно посмотреть прежде, чем принять решение о нанесении ракетно-бомбовых ударов, за которыми, безусловно, последуют жертвы, в том числе среди мирного населения. Разве нельзя и не нужно об этом подумать? Конечно, убеждён, что нужно.

А как своему коллеге сказал бы, что в ближайшее время у нас предстоит встреча в Санкт-Петербурге. Надеюсь, что Президент Соединённых Штатов будет там среди участников, и у нас, безусловно, будет возможность в таком широком составе поговорить в том числе и в отношении сирийской проблемы ещё раз.

Конечно, «двадцатка» – это не формализованный юридический орган, это такая площадка, которая не может подменить собой Совет Безопасности Организации Объединённых Наций, только он может принять решение о применении силы. Но это хорошая площадка для обсуждения проблемы. Почему этим не воспользоваться?

Кстати говоря, что касается интересов Соединённых Штатов. Ведь и в самих США, обратите внимание на прессу американскую, обратите внимание на высказывания политиков, экспертов, там по-разному оценивается та или другая военная акция. Большинство аналитиков сейчас склоняется к тому, что, например, акция в отношении Ирака была ошибочной. Но если мы исходим из того, что в прошлом были ошибки, почему сейчас это безошибочным считается?

Все это должно нас заставить задуматься о том, чтобы без спешки принимать такие решения. И разве в интересах Соединённых Штатов лишний раз разрушать международную систему безопасности, фундаментальные основы международного права? Разве это будет укреплять международный престиж Соединённых Штатов Америки? Вряд ли.

Мы призываем как следует подумать, прежде чем принимать такие решения, которые явно идут вразрез с мнением международного сообщества и разрушают всю систему безопасности и, безусловно, наносят ущерб конкретным людям. То, что что-то делать нужно, это очевидно. Но спешка в таких вещах может привести к результатам, совершенно обратным ожидаемым.

ВОПРОС: Владимир Владимирович, а как Вы считаете, вероятность нанесения удара американцами насколько всё-таки высока? И что Россия будет делать, если такой удар будет нанесён?

В.ПУТИН: Знаете что, откуда я знаю? Это Вы у них спросите. Я могу вам сказать, почему это происходит, почему это обсуждается.

Понимаете, это элементарная вещь для людей, которые вовлечены в ход событий. Сирийская правительственная армия наступает. Так называемые повстанцы в сложном положении. У них нет такого вооружения, которое есть у правительственных войск: нет ни авиации, ни ракетной техники, нет современных ракетных и артиллерийских систем.

Что нужно сделать тем, кто является спонсором этих так называемых повстанцев, и тем, которые стоят за спиной этих спонсоров? Помочь им в военном отношении. Как? Заполнить вот эту недостающую нишу их возможностей. Нельзя же им поставить самолёты и ракетные системы – научить их невозможно. Выход только один – самим наносить удары. Если это произойдёт, это было бы крайне печально.

31 августа 2013 года, 14:00Владивосток
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