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RIA Novosti

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U.S. calls on Russia to freeze arms sales to Syria

Topic: Protests in Syria

12:50 12/08/2011
WASHINGTON, August 12 (RIA Novosti)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has called on Russia to stop selling weapons to Syria, where a crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad has claimed some 2,000 lives.

"We want to see Russia cease selling arms to the Assad regime," Clinton said in an interview with CBS news on Thursday.

Russia joined in early August the growing international condemnation of the violence in Syria after security forces intensified their crackdown on protesters with the beginning of the holy Islamic month of Ramadan. President Dmitry Medvedev said Russia may make "some kind of decisions" against the Syrian government if al-Assad does not restore peace in the country and conduct reforms.

World powers, including Arab states, voiced their concern about the situation in Syria earlier this month after more than 300 people were killed by pro-government troops, mainly in the cities of Hama and Deir al-Zor, in just a week.

When asked if the United States intended to urge Assad to step down, Clinton said: "Well, I think we've been very clear in what we have said about his loss of legitimacy... We are, I think, building the chorus of international condemnation. And, rather than, you know, us saying it and nobody else following, we think it's important to lead and have others follow as well."

U.S. media have reported that Washington is planning to call on Assad to step down in the next few days, rather then just condemn his crackdown on protesters.

"What we really need to do to put the pressure on Assad is to sanction the oil and gas industry," Clinton said, adding that Europe, as well as China and India - who have made large investments in Syria's energy sphere - should support the sanctions.

At a meeting with a delegation of diplomats from Brazil, India and South Africa on Wednesday, Assad admitted that his security forces had made "some mistakes" in quelling nationwide protests over the last five months. He also promised to go along with reforms and continue dialogue with the opposition.

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RIA NovostiU.S. calls on Russia to freeze arms sales to Syria

12:50 12/08/2011 U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has called on Russia to stop selling weapons to Syria, where a crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad has claimed some 2,000 lives.>>

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  • Veselko3Just ask Medvedev
    15:49, 12/08/2011
    US: No S-300 for Iran? - Medvedev:OK no S-300 for Iran
    US: Intervention in Libya? - Medvedev: OK for intervention
    US: Freeze arms sales - Medvedev : OK no problem
    US: What if Putin becomes President ? - Medvedev : No problem, I'll stay on CIA payroll.
  • severnayazemlyaCut U.S. State Department fleet of 475 limousines
    04:52, 13/08/2011
    Priorty number one in U.S. budget cuts should be the bloated and unanswerable U.S. State Department, such as the 475 limousines purchased under Secretary of State Hilary Clinton. They can take the metro, bus, or local taxis, like people who work for a living.

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