March 21 - U.S. Secretary of State Clinton praises the United Nations for voicing united support for U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan's bid to end the violence in Syria. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
In a major diplomatic blow for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Russia and China joined the U.N. Security Council Wednesday in voicing support for U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan's bid to end violence that has brought Syria to the brink of civil war. In Washington, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called it a positive step. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON SAYING: "The Council has now spoken with one voice. It has demanded a U.N. supervised cessation of violence in all its forms beginning with a pull back from population centers by the Syrian government forces; humanitarian access to all areas in need; and the beginning of a Syrian led political process to address the legitimate aspirations of all Syrian people. that will lead to a democratic transition." Standing side by side with her Afghan counterpart she also had a message for Assad. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON SAYING: "And to President Assad and his regime along with the rest of the international community -- take this path community to it or face increasing pressure and isolation. " Amateur video out Syria indicates that violence shows no sign of abating in Syria. The video, which could not be independently verified by Reuters comes as forces loyal to Assad have made gains against rebels around the country. The United Nations says more than 8,000 people have been killed since the uprising began a year ago, The Assad government has blamed the violence on foreign backed insurgent groups. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters.