Syrian President Bashar Assad
Photo: AFP

Syria: Obama speech offered nothing new

Damascus says US president 'arrogant,' fails to understand meaning of democracy; while Tripoli slams rhetoric as 'delusional'

US President Barack Obama's Mideast policy speech offered nothing new but simply reaffirmed Washington's staunch support for Israel, Syria's official SANA news agency said Friday.


"The US president's speech on the Middle East had nothing new as far as his country's policies on the peace process, the situation in Iraq or security or regional stability are concerned… all it did was reaffirm the deep-rooted and unwavering support for Israel's security."


The government-sponsored daily al-Thawra criticized Obama: "He speaks under the banner of democracy without knowing the meaning of the word."


The newspaper accused Obama of "arrogance" in calling for Syrian President Bashar Assad to embrace democracy or step down.


"Obama is arrogant in telling a sovereign country what to do, and threatening to isolate it if it fails to do as it is told."


Damascus' ruling party's newspaper al-Baath said the long-awaited speech was "disappointing" and had failed to deliver on expectations.


SANA's report further condemned Obama for "sowing discord": "He is inciting violence when he says that Assad and his regime will face challenges from the inside and will be isolated on the outside if he fails to adopt democratic reforms."


Meanwhile, Libya's government called Obama's speech "delusional," after he said that Muammar Gaddafi would inevitably leave power.


"Obama is still delusional. He believes the lies that his own government and media spread around the world ... It's not Obama who decides whether Muammar Gaddafi leaves Libya or not. It's the Libyan people," Government Spokesman Mussa Ibrahim told journalists.  


Jordan, on the other hand, hailed the speech. In a report by state news agency Petra, Jordanian Minister of Foreign Business Nasser Jawdeh welcomed the sentiments expressed in the speech saying, "for the first time he spoke clearly about his vision for the establishment of a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders." 



פרסום ראשון: 05.20.11, 13:09
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