DHAKA: The Washington administration could consider a `military option` in Syria if the violence in the Arab Republic escalates, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey said.
`I think the military option should be considered`, Martin Dempsey told CNN.
`But my preference … would be that the international community can find ways of increasing the pressure on (Syrian President Bashar) al-Assad to do the right thing and step aside.`
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, meanwhile, condemned the killing of more than 100 civilians in Houla last week, saying the world’s patience had run out on Damascus.
`To carry out this kind of murder, to shamefully murder 50 innocent children, 110 innocent civilians ... is torture, it is wretched`, Erdoğan said.
`There is also a limit to patience, and I believe that, God willing, there is also a limit to the patience in the UN Security Council.`
France is set to announce the gathering of the third Friends of Syria meeting, which will be held in Paris in either late June or early July amid a call by the Syrian National Council for international intervention in Syria.
Some 32 people, 20 soldiers, six civilians and six rebels, were reportedly killed Wednesday in Aleppo province, opposition sources said.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said on May 28 `the military option should be considered`, as the violence in Syria escalates.
`I think the military option should be considered. But my preference, of course always as the senior military leader, would be that the international community can find ways of increasing the pressure on al-Assad to do the right thing and step aside`, Dempsey said on CNN.
Dempsey had earlier told the `CBS This Morning` television programme that diplomatic pressure should come before the military option.
`I think that diplomatic pressure should always precede any discussions about military options. And my job, by the way, is options, not policy. So we’ll be prepared to provide options if asked to do so`, he said.
BDST: 0028 HRS, MAY 31, 2012
Edited by Robab Rosan, Cultural Affairs Editor
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