Syrian government forces perpetrated yet another atrocity against the Syrian people, when they fired rockets using scud missiles into the Syrian city of Aleppo on February 22nd. Dozens of people were killed in the Friday evening onslaught. The Friday attack follows the assault on Aleppo of Tuesday, February 18th, that destroyed several city blocks in the Jabal Badr district of Aleppo and injured hundreds of innocent civilians. The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms the series of attacks against Aleppo.
These military assaults, as well as other atrocities such as the strike against a field hospital earlier, are only the latest demonstrations of the Syrian regime's ruthlessness and its lack of compassion for the Syrian people it claims to represent.
"The Assad regime," said State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland, "has no legitimacy and remains in power only through brute force." Syrians across the country have demanded that President Bashar al-Assad step aside and allow a Syrian-led political transition to begin so that the rights of all Syrians can be respected, and the country can begin to rebuild.
The United States sees no indication that the brave Syrian people fighting against this aggression will accept these regime leaders, with the blood of so many Syrians on their hands, as part of a transition government.
The United States has contributed $385 million to help Syrian refugees and citizens inside Syria who have been displaced by regime violence. As the regime strikes out against more and more civilians, the U.S. has increased its humanitarian aid in close coordination with Syrian activists, and the U.S. has urged other countries to do so as well.
The United States has also helped local administrative councils, provincial revolution councils and the local coordination committees organize themselves to play their vital role in the revolution.
The United States looks forward to meeting soon with the leadership of the legitimate representative of the Syrian people, the Syrian Opposition Coalition, to discuss how the United States and other friends of the Syrian people can do more to help the Syrian people achieve the political transition that they demand and they deserve.