FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
I want to express the tremendous gratitude and respect the United States has for Mr. Lakhdar Brahimi who, tomorrow, will relinquish his post as the UN-Arab League Joint Special Representative to Syria. Mr. Brahimi devoted two years to finding a political way forward in Syria. His persistence and creativity proved instrumental in bringing together, for the first time, Syrian Opposition and Syrian Government delegations at peace talks in Geneva earlier this year.
Through two difficult rounds of the Geneva talks, Mr. Brahimi charted a path for peace founded on the principles outlined in the Geneva Communique. The Syrian Government, however, has undermined his good offices by refusing to embrace fully those principles and failing to engage seriously with the Syrian Opposition Coalition. We appreciate the UN’s overall mediation and we support its parallel efforts to bring humanitarian relief to the 9.3 million Syrians in need. We take this occasion to honor the UN staff in Syria who work at great personal risk, 14 of whom have been killed since the conflict began, and 28 of whom are detained or missing.
The United States remains unwavering in its support for a negotiated political solution to the crisis, one that will end the terrible violence and suffering the people of Syria have endured for over three years. We join Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in expressing our hope that we can continue to draw on Mr. Brahimi’s knowledge and experience as we work with our international partners to advance the cause of peace in Syria.
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