U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry warned Tuesday that it may be difficult to keep Syria whole if it takes much longer to end the fighting after Syria’s regime agreed in the same day to the ceasefire deal announced by the United States and Russia.
“It may be too late to keep it as a whole Syria if we wait much longer,” he told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee at a hearing on the State Department’s annual budget request.
Kerry also said that, even if Russian-backed forces took the city of Aleppo, it is hard to hold territory in Syria.
He also said it will be seen “very quickly” whether countries are serious about Syria cessation of hostilities agreement, adding that there are several other options being considered if Syria cessation of hostilities does not take hold.
“Anybody who thinks that there is impunity for violating this… is making a grave mistake,” he said after its Republican chairman, Senator Bob Corker, said he did not believe there would be any consequences under President Barack Obama.
“There is a significant discussion taking place now about Plan B if we don’t succeed at the table,” Kerry said.
French President Francois Hollande also said Tuesday the Syrian ceasefire must be fully and promptly implemented, after discussing it with the leaders of Britain, Germany and the United States.
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