Kerry remarks on meeting with Davutoglu and al-Khatib
Kerry made his remarks from the Adile Sultan Palace in Istanbul. Kerry commented on the devastation and loss of life in Syria, including attacks against innocent civilians and the use questionable weaponry.
"As Moaz Khatib has said and as (Davutoglu) has said, the situation in Syria is simply horrific," Kerry said. "It is horrible. And cities and neighborhoods are under fire constantly from heavy artillery. Ballistic missiles are used against people, innocent people, and Assad is using his air force to rain down terror, dropping various kind of bombs, some very questionable, on the people of his country. This conflict is now spilling across borders, and it is threatening stability in neighboring countries. And we had some of those countries obviously represented at the table tonight. Last Sunday, tragically, the regime's violence led to the loss, in one moment, of 30 innocent children."
Kerry, Davutoglu and al-Khatib spoke on Saturday night and Sunday morning about the potential for a transition to peace. Kerry said the U.S. is committed to a unified and democratic post-Assad Syria in which a wide range of people, including Alawi, Druze, Christians and Kurds, have a future.
"We believe that today, what we did was come up with two important documents - one, a document which the Syrian opposition came up with - it's their document - that expresses their vision for the future of Syria," Kerry said. "And among other things, as the President just said, they are committed to a pluralistic Syria, to a Syria in which every minority has minority rights protected. That includes all the minorities, in which everybody will have an ability to be able to make choices for the future. It is a vision that rejects terrorism and rejects extremism. It is a vision that is pledged to never use chemical weapons."
Kerry closed by expressing hope that the U.S. can help the Syrian opposition negotiate a peaceful future.
"So I just close by saying to you our hope is that we can somehow get to that negotiation within the framework of the Geneva communiqué," Kerry said. "But if we can't, we are all committed to continue to support the Syrian opposition, and there would have to be further announcements about the kind of support that that might be in the days ahead."