U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson announced Thursday that “steps are underway” to remove Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power.
Tillerson, responding to comments surrounding allegations that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack Tuesday, confirmed to reporters at a Florida news conference that an international coalition would soon be organized.
Rex Tillerson says “steps are underway” to remove Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power https://t.co/HzlO21Ma9s
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) April 6, 2017
Doubling down on his comments, Tillerson added that there seems to be “no role” for Assad in the future of Syria and is considering an “appropriate response” with President Trump.
“Assad’s role in the future is uncertain clearly, and with the acts that he has taken it would seem that there would be no role for him to govern the Syrian people,” Tillerson said.
The available intelligence, Tillerson claimed, leaves “no doubt” that the Syrian government is responsible for the attack. Tillerson also called on the Russian government to rethink its “continued support of the Assad regime.”
“And we think its time that the Russians really need to think carefully about their continued support of the Assad regime,” Tillerson said.
Tillerson on Assad: “Clearly with the acts that he has taken it would seem there would be no role for him to govern the Syrian people.” pic.twitter.com/Nr5BcHJmz1
— ABC News (@ABC) April 6, 2017
More than 70 civilians, including numerous children, were killed in the country’s northern region from the Sarin gas attack.
Critics of further intervention into the country are pointing both to Trump’s prior comments on Syria, in which he repeatedly called for President Obama to steer clear of the conflict, and to concerns that the attack needs proper investigation to confirm the perpetrator.
Trump on Wednesday told reports that the attack has drastically changed his view toward Syria and its president.
“I will tell you that attack on children yesterday had a big impact on me, big impact,” Trump said. “My attitude toward Syria and Assad has changed very much… You’re now talking about a whole different level.”
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