Possible action against Syria not for regime change: White House

The US has insisted that it is not seeking a regime change in Syria, where it is contemplating taking military action against President Bashar al-Assad`s government for alleged use of chemical weapons.

Last Updated: Aug 28, 2013, 10:16 AM IST

Washington: The US has insisted that it is not seeking a regime change in Syria, where it is contemplating taking military action against President Bashar al-Assad`s government for alleged use of chemical weapons.

"I want to make clear that the options that we are considering are not about regime change. They are about responding to a clear violation of an international standard that prohibits the use of chemical weapons," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters.

"We are also very much engaged in an effort to support the opposition in its struggle with the Assad regime as the Assad regime continues to try to massacre its own people in an effort to maintain power. It is our firm conviction that Syria`s future cannot include Assad in power," he said.

"But this deliberation and the actions that we are contemplating are not about regime change. We believe, that resolution of this conflict has to come through political negotiation and settlement," Carney said.

"It is not our policy position to respond to this through regime change.

We will take an appropriate response, and the President and his team are evaluating the options available to them. And the President will make an assessment and an announcement in due time," he reiterated.

The US, he said, also maintain a policy with regards to the conflict which has it providing significant support to the opposition, significant humanitarian support to the Syrian people that is designed to help bring about a transition in Syria, a political transition, that will allow Syria the future that its people deserve.

Carney reiterated that the options that are being considered do not contain within them a regime change focus.

"That is not what we are contemplating here. We are examining options to respond to this violation," he said.

"This is obviously a terrible conflict that has exacted a horrific price on the Syrian people and the region, and it is ongoing. We have stepped up our support for the opposition and our humanitarian support for the Syrian people and for the countries that are dealing with the refugee crisis related to the Syrian conflict," he said.
"The use of chemical weapons on the scale that we saw is a separate and distinct fact that needs to be responded to, and it will be responded to in some form," he added.
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