UK and US get generous with Assad with offer of immunity

UK and US get generous with Assad with offer of immunity
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Published June 21st, 2012 - 11:12 GMT via

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President Assad on an official trip to Moscow
President Assad on an official trip to Moscow
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Los Cabos
The Independent
The Guardian
Ali Abdullah Saleh
Bashar Assad
Kofi Annan
David Cameron
Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi
Hillary Clinton
Barack Obama
Vladimir Putin
Department of State
Arab League
U.N. Security Council
United Nations
International Criminal Court
Syrian government

Washington and London may be willing to offer safe passage or clemency to Syrian President Bashar Assad if that meant removing him from power, diplomats said.

The possibility -- modeling an Assad exit similar to one that took effect for former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh in February -- emerged after U.S. President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron met individually with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the summit of the Group of 20 leading industrial and developing economies in Los Cabos, Mexico, the diplomats told the British newspapers The Guardian and The Independent.

U.S. and British officials were convinced after the meetings that Putin was not wedded to Assad remaining in power indefinitely, although Moscow is reluctant to say this, the newspapers said.

Those of us who had bilaterals thought there was just enough out of those meetings to make it worth pursuing the objective of negotiating a transitional process in Syria, a senior British official told The Guardian.

An Assad clemency offer, protecting him from prosecution by the International Criminal Court -- which prosecutes individuals for war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity -- could involve letting him flee Syria for another country, possibly Russia or Iran, The Independent said.

It is hard to see a negotiated solution in which one of the participants would be willing voluntarily to go off to the International Criminal Court, a senior British official told The Guardian.

On the basis of the Putin discussions, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will ask U.N.-Arab League special envoy Kofi Annan to change the format of his plans for a contact group on Syria, and instead host a conference, using Saleh's removal from Yemen as a model, The Guardian said.

The State Department had no immediate comment.

In Saleh's case, he was granted immunity in February, despite the massacre of civilians during a popular uprising against his regime. Yemeni Vice President Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi, to whom Saleh ceded power, is drawing up a new Constitution.

The Annan conference, in Geneva, Switzerland, could be held as early as next week, the sources said.

The talks would focus on the part of Annan's six-point peace plan, which Assad signed, that calls for a Syrian-led political process, which Western diplomats says would end in Assad's departure.

The meeting would include Syrian regime and opposition leaders, the five permanent U.N. Security Council members and key regional powers such as Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

Moscow has been pressing for Iran to participate, an idea Washington and London reject.

The optimal scenario would be to create a timetable of 18 to 24 months to establish a new Syrian government, without Assad, but perhaps with some current regime members still remaining, along with opposition representatives, The Independent said.


What do you think about Assad being given safe passage? Tell us your thoughts below. 


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Its just like they did to Jean Claude Duvalier, Aristide, But can't do to Hugo Chavez. it is said " Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat its mistakes". what's happening around the world today happened before its just that they do not use a sword but use an M16, Ak47 they don't use a catapult but use a gps guided misile ( smart bomb) either way people the end result is war and someone has got to DIE.

GFXW (not verified) Fri, 06/22/2012 - 13:29

I think it will be very wise to give Asaad and his circle of family and friends a safe passage to Russia or Iran. This is better than attacking the country or creating a civil war, like we did in Iraq and Afghanistan. Why kill thousands????

Anonymous (not verified) Fri, 06/22/2012 - 13:12

Offering a butcher like Assad immunity from prosecution is immoral and ridiculous. For Assad to know that if things become impossible he can bolt for a Black Sea resort with container-loads of money is an invitation to him to tough it out without any concern for the lives of his people, secure in the knowledge that he'll never have to face consequences, if he fails.

Alan (not verified) Fri, 06/22/2012 - 11:21

My comment has been queued for moderation ,what a joke,you might offend the Assad

Anonymous (not verified) Fri, 06/22/2012 - 03:04

How can they offer this to a man that has killed 15000 of his own people

Anonymous (not verified) Fri, 06/22/2012 - 02:59

Sad the International community has to offer a mass murdering tyrant immunity to depose his despotic rule. Would Churchill and Roosevelt have offered Adolf Hitler the same opportunity?
Seems to me that the United Nations Charter has well and truly had it's day, and that the power of veto is now outdated, allowing any ' big 3' country, Russia in this instance, the power to block a united front against Syria's tragic genocide and the suffering of it's own people.

Louey Hesterman (not verified) Fri, 06/22/2012 - 02:13

I think it is a good way to stop the blood shed

Anonymous (not verified) Thu, 06/21/2012 - 19:33

The difficulty in solving Syrian crisis is because the International Community have taken side by asking Asad to go. Removing Asad will not solve the problem. Think twice. Look at what is happening in Lybia today. Has the removal of Muhammar Ghaddafi solve their problem? Those who masterminded the removal of Ghaddafi turn deaf hears to the situation in Libya today.Insecurity here and there. When solving problem between two people one must remain neutral.

Anonymous (not verified) Thu, 06/21/2012 - 18:16

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