Assad must reform or step aside: Britain's Hague

AFP , Monday 18 Jul 2011

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has no choice but reform or stepping aside

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Monday that the Syrian regime could face more sanctions as he reiterated his call for President Bashar al-Assad to implement reforms or leave power.

"The situation remains very serious and, if anything, is deteriorating," Hague told reporters as he arrived for a meeting of European Union foreign ministers in Brussels.

"It is really up to the Syrian people but I believe he should reform or step aside," he said.

The European Union has slapped asset freezes and travel bans on the Damascus regime, including against Assad, in response to a brutal crackdown on anti-government protests.

"Certainly there will be a time for further sanctions," Hague said.

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