Hillary Clinton: Syrian President 'Has Lost His Legitimacy'

Secretary of State supports regime change after attacks

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Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke out against Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad Monday evening. Following attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Damascus and the residence of ambassador Robert Ford, Clinton told reporters, "President [Bashar al-] Assad is not indispensable and we have absolutely nothing invested in him remaining in power," and that, "he has lost his legitimacy." Pro-regime crowds attacked the embassy Monday, "throwing rocks, breaking windows and hanging a giant flag on the compound walls," reports The Wall Street Journal. The attacks come following a trip by ambassador Ford to the city of Hama, the largest site where anti-regime protestors have gathered. Clinton also said, "our goal is to see that the will of the Syrian people for a democratic transformation occurs."

BBC News is reporting that Clinton chose her words carefully because the administration is worried "of a repeat of the Libya scenario, where after calling for Col Muammar Gaddafi to leave power, it has struggled to make that happen."

The Wall Street Journal adds, "State Department officials have been coordinating a response to the Syrian crisis with Turkey, the allied nation seen having the most leverage over Mr. Assad, as well as with key Arab countries." U.S. officials have no faith the long term prospects for Assad. Clinton is meeting with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan later this week to discuss the growing concern over the situation in Syria.

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