Syria hints Assad could go
- Published: 21 Aug 2012 at 23.05
- Online news:
A top Syrian minister on Tuesday held out the prospect of strongman Bashar al-Assad stepping down as part of a negotiated settlement to 17 months of bloodshed that activists say has killed 23,000.
The comments from Syria's Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil came following talks with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and other Moscow officials who are keen to keep their sway over the Soviet-era ally in case of the fall of Assad.
Jamil rejected the idea of making Assad's resignation the condition for any future negotiations _ a demand made not only by the armed opposition but also Washington and several big European states.
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