The United States on Thursday renewed its call for Bashar al-Assad to step down, marking the fourth anniversary of the civil war by paying tribute to “the brave Syrians” fighting tyranny.
“For four years the Assad regime has answered Syrians’ calls for freedom and reform with unrelenting brutality, authoritarianism and destruction,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters.
“As we have long said, Assad must go and be replaced through a negotiated, political transition that is representative of the Syrian people.”
Without the departure of Assad, it would not be possible “to fully stabilize” the country, Psaki said.
“On this somber occasion, we are reminded of all those who suffered and of the brave Syrians who stand up to tyranny and continue to struggle for a future of respect for basic rights, tolerance and prosperity.”
Separately, the US special envoy to Syria, Daniel Rubinstein, wrote in a message: “Assad`s desperation to cling to power through daily terror reminds us all that he has long lost legitimacy and he must give way for a real political transition.”
“Let us recognize that the courageous Syrian people — and neither a dictator nor foreign fighters — must determine their future,” he added in a post on the US embassy’s Facebook page.
Spokesman for the Syrian National Coalition Salem al-Meslet stresses that “Assad’s departure is still a basic requirement for agreeing to engage in any political settlement,” pointing out that this is and always will be the basic demand of the Syrian people, who have sacrificed dearly towards this end.” (Source: Syrian Coalition)