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Tue Feb 7, 2012, 01:17 PM

U.S. Seeks ‘Plan B’ to End Syria Violence [View all]

By Nicole Gaouette and Flavia Krause-Jackson - Tue Feb 07 15:07:16 GMT 2012

The U.S. and allies are seeking ways to increase pressure on Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad after Russian and Chinese vetoes blocked efforts at the United Nations Security Council to support a political transition.

“We’re going to have to take measures outside the UN to strengthen and deepen and broaden the international community pressure on Assad,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said yesterday.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will work with allies to create an international support group for Assad’s opposition and to tighten sanctions against Syria, Nuland said. Other steps include pushing Syria’s trade partners to drop business with the regime and halt weapons shipments in particular, she said. Further action at the UN is also on the table, according to UN diplomats who weren’t authorized to comment publicly.

“There will be a ‘Plan B,’” Aaron David Miller of the Wilson Center, a Washington policy group, said in a telephone interview. “The question is whether it will work and how effective the strategy will be.”



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