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Kerry says Russia, Syria should face war crimes probe

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Secretary of State John Kerry spoke in New York on Sept. 22. Kerry called today for Russia and Syria to face a war crimes investigation for their attacks on Syrian civilians.

WASHINGTON » Secretary of State John Kerry called today for Russia and Syria to face a war crimes investigation for their attacks on Syrian civilians, further illustrating the downward spiral in relations between Washington and Moscow.

Kerry said Syrian forces hit a hospital overnight, killing 20 people and wounding 100, describing what would be the latest strike by Moscow or its ally in Damascus on a civilian target.

“Russia and the regime owe the world more than an explanation about why they keep hitting hospitals, and medical facilities, and women and children,” Kerry told reporters alongside French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, who arrived in Washington directly from meeting Russian officials in Moscow.

Kerry said such acts “beg for an appropriate investigation of war crimes.”

“They are beyond the accidental now, way beyond,” Kerry said in some of his toughest criticism to date. He accused Russia and Syria of undertaking a targeted strategy to “terrorize civilians.”

Ayrault, for his part, spoke of a new French effort for a cease-fire in Syria. But it’s unclear what advantages his plan would have over the U.S.-Russian led process that collapsed last month.

Kerry’s Sept. 9 agreement with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov would have created a new counterterrorism alliance in Syria, had fighting stopped for a week and aid deliveries been permitted to reach desperate civilians in rebel-held parts of Aleppo and other besieged areas.

Neither condition was ever met.

The truce then broke completely when Syria and Russia renewed their military offensive in Aleppo. Kerry ended bilateral discussions with Russia on the military partnership earlier this week.

The war has killed as many as a half-million people since 2011, contributed to Europe’s worst refugee crisis since World War II and allowed the Islamic State group to carve out territory for itself and emerge as a global terror threat.

As Kerry and Ayrault spoke at the State Department, Russia’s lower house of parliament ratified a new treaty with Syria that would allow Russia’s military to remain indefinitely in the Arab country. The vote was unanimous, a show of support for Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government.

Russia launched its air campaign in Syria a year ago, reversing the tide of war and helping Assad’s forces make significant territorial gains.

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  • Talk all you want. From here on in I would like for America to take care of themselves. Spending billions of dollars helping people who don’t care for Americans is beyond me. Use the money for us. We have millions of citizens who are barely surviving.

  • Come on Kerry, tell me hasn’t the US bombed civilians in war zone past with shoddy intelligence? You’ve got a problem like this because your boss Obama gave Russia and other nemesis the boldness to be aggressive with his Soft stances. The line drawn in the sand was crossed long ago! Russia has no fear the lame threats from Obama and his crew. As we see today Lameness does nothin for peace as it strengthened the boldness of the agressors, just look at what China is doing building man-made islands for their military, Russia being aggressively grabbing land at it’s borders and backing Assad in Syria who Obama says should be taken out of power. Obama words of threats or consequences, as Sgt. Schultz would put it, means NOTHIN! absolutely NOTHIN! and now Obama/Kerry must get back the respect the US had it gave up being soft? PUTIN is a Smart President, tell me who’s respect he does not get? Obama/Kerry has their eyes on him and if that ain’t respect, what is? Trump doesn’t respect Putin in a good friendly way but as a leader to be respected warily as a foe! Get real you PC lovers

    • Hiroshima, Nagasaki, My Lai Massacre. And, what is anybody going to do about it, press the reset button? Like Clinton said Democrat voters are easy to manipulate and Obama didn’t have his hand on the tiller half the time. The other half he was feckless. At least she was right for twice.
      In a recent Town Hall meeting she used a child actress picked at “random” to ask about Donald Trump’s comment on ugly bodies. Turned out she was (D)Senator Daylin Leach’s daughter Brennan. The thing was rigged. Just like the DOJ, FBI.
      She will do anything and stoop so low. 8 more years? You can do better.

  • Stalin, Khrushchev, Andropov, …. Gorbachev,… Putin. All avowed communist, anti-American, empire builders, and dictators. Trump likes these monsters than President Obama. Russia does not like what happened since the fall of the Berlin wall. Let’s get real and understand that Russia hates America. We are enemies. That is a good starting point. Take out NATO and kiss Europe goodbye.

      • Haven’t you heard the saying, Good Guys finishes last? Obama’s Good Guys approach dealing in trade, racism, foreign Countries failed. What don’t you see of all the aggression imposed by China and Russia? Those are the REAL problems, it’s not what you think of Trump but what Obama/Hillary did not do for America’s good being Lame Leaders

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