Clinton says US supports UN force in Syria, but no comment on NATO role

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the G8 Ministerial, April 12, 2012

From Hillary Clinton, the Department of State:  Assad will have to go, and the Syrian people must be given the chance to chart their own future.

Given the Assad regime’s record of broken promises, we are proceeding, understandably, with caution. The ministers agreed to remain in close contact in the hours and days ahead. As we speak, our representatives in New York are consulting on a potential UN monitoring mission that would go to Syria under the right authorities, circumstances, and conditions. The United States supports sending an advance team immediately to begin this work. And both will need complete freedom of movement, unimpeded communications, and access throughout the country and to all Syrians, as well as firm security guarantees from all parties. . . .

[O]ur teams are working in New York on a UN Security Council resolution that calls for Assad to fully comply with all points in the Annan plan and that supports Kofi Annan’s request to send a UN advance team to Syria immediately to prepare the way for a full, robust international monitoring mission. And let me be as clear as I can: That monitoring mission will only be a force for peace and security if it enjoys the full freedom of action within Syria. That means freedom of movement, secure communications, a large enough ground presence to bear witness to the enforcement of the six-point plan in every part of Syria.

QUESTION [Scott Stearns, VOA]: [C]ould you tell us whether you support NATO protecting the border between Turkey and Syria? . . .

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, with respect to your first question, there is nothing of that nature pending and I’m not going to comment on hypotheticals.

Excerpts from remarks by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the conclusion of the G8 Ministerial.  (photo: Getty)

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