French President Nicolas Sarkozy accused Syria’s Bashar al-Assad of seeking to “wipe Homs from the map”,comparing his campaign to the Libyan regime’s attacks on the city of Benghazi.
“Bashar al-Assad is lying in a shameful way,he wants to wipe Homs from the map like (former Libyan strongman Muammar) Gaddafi wanted to wipe Benghazi from the map,” Sarkozy told Europe 1 radio.
“The solution is the creation of humanitarian corridors so an opposition can exist in Syria,” he said.
The French president and other Western leaders had cited the Gaddafi regime’s attacks on Benghazi as reason for the international community to intervene in Libya.
Sarkozy also said that the isolation of Russia and China on Syria “will not last” and that the two countries will eventually join the rest of the international community against Damascus.
“The Chinese and the Russians do not like being isolated,” he said.
“And when we gather the major countries to say ‘here is the direction we are going in’,with our Arab allies,Russia and China’s isolation on the Syria question will not last,” Sarkozy said.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe was to host today 13 other foreign ministers for talks on Syria in Paris,which France says will send a “strong” call to the regime to abide by a peace plan.
Syrian troops continued to pound rebel strongholds on Wednesday,including the flashpoint central city of Homs,as the regime sought to reassure an increasingly sceptical world that it is committed to a week-old ceasefire.