US has not given up ‘pursuit of peace’ in Syria: Kerry

BRUSSELS: The United States has not given up the “pursuit of peace” in Syria, Secretary of State John Kerry said today after the White House abandoned talks with Russia on reviving a ceasefire deal.

“Yesterday, as most of you saw, the United States announced our decision to suspend our bilateral discussions with Russia on the reinstitution of the cessation of hostilities agreement – a decision that, believe me, we did not come to lightly,” Kerry said in a speech in Brussels.

“I want to be very, very clear to everybody, we are not giving up on the Syrian people, we are not abandoning the pursuit of peace, we are not going to leave the multilateral field, we are going to continue to try to find a way forward in order to end this war,” he added.

The top US diplomat also launched a withering attack on Moscow for its military support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, as the bombardment of besieged eastern Aleppo continues.

“The Syrian regime and Russia have rejected diplomacy in furtherance of their pursuit of a military victory over the broken bodies, bombed-out hospitals, and traumatised children of a long-suffering land,” added Kerry.

“People who are serious about making peace behave differently from the way Russia has chosen to behave,” he said.