Kerry: ‘Exceedingly difficult’ for Syria to satisfy terms of Russian proposal

September 10, 2013

Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday that the Obama administration remains skeptical that Syria will turn over its chemical weapons to international monitors, as Russia is proposing, and he said the administration needs to see quick and verifiable action.

”We have made it clear to them … that this cannot be a process of delay, this cannot be a process of avoidance," Kerry said during his opening remarks at a hearing of the House Armed Services Committee. "It has to be real, measurable, tangible. And it is exceedingly difficult – I want everybody here to know – to fulfill those conditions."

Kerry added: "We’re waiting for that proposal, but we’re not waiting for long."

Kerry also warned the United Nations Security Council, which the administration has expressed frustrations with in regards to Syria, would need to act quickly as well if it fulfills the role of the international monitor.

"If the United Nations Security Council seeks to be a vehicle to make it happen, that cannot be allowed to simply become a debating society," Kerry said.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix, the Post’s top political blog.
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Aaron Blake | September 10, 2013