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Panetta: Syria no-fly zone not on front burner [View All]

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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-14-12 04:09 AM
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Panetta: Syria no-fly zone not on front burner
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Aug 14, 3:12 AM EDT

Panetta: Syria no-fly zone not on front burner

By LOLITA C. BALDOR and ROBERT BURNS
Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says plans to set up a no-fly zone over parts of Syria are "not on the front burner," despite persistent calls from rebel forces there that they need the added protection from escalating regime airstrikes.

In an interview with The Associated Press on Monday, Panetta said he is confident the U.S. could successfully enforce a no-fly zone over Syria, but doing so would require a "major, major policy decision" that has not yet been made.

"We have planned for a number of contingencies that could take place and one of those possible contingencies is developing a no-fly zone. But we've also pointed out difficulties in being able to implement that," Panetta said. "It's not on the front burner as far as I know."

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said recently that Washington and Turkey are discussing a range of steps, including a no-fly zone over some parts of Syria. Rebel leaders have expressed frustration that the United States has limited its assistance to non-lethal aid.


http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_PANETTA_AP_IN...

Did Panetta go out of his lane and mess up Hillary's diplomatic efforts?


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