I wish to personally thank Joint Special Envoy Kofi Annan for his dedication, service, and determined efforts to promote a peaceful resolution of the crisis in Syria. Mr. Annan is to be commended for taking on such a thankless and difficult task at great personal cost. He did so because, as he has throughout his distinguished career, Mr. Annan placed service to the UN and the cause of peace above any personal interest. His mission could never have succeeded so long as the Assad regime continuously broke it pledges to implement the Six Point Plan and persisted in using horrific violence against its own people. When the Security Council failed to heed Mr. Annan’s repeated calls for collective and significant consequences for non-compliance with its prior resolutions, those members who blocked this action effectively made Mr. Annan’s mission impossible.
The Assad regime’s days are numbered. The only question is how many more lives must be lost before it falls. We will continue to work urgently with our partners in the international community — including the over 100 countries in the Friends of the Syrian People — to accelerate the transition, provide support to the opposition, and meet the increasingly grave humanitarian needs of the Syrian people.