US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Monday that Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad could take credit for quickly starting the process of destroying his government’s chemical weapons arsenal, and thanked Russia for its help.
“The process has begun in record time and we are appreciative for the Russian cooperationand obviously for the Syrian compliance,” he told reporters alongside Russian Foreign MinisterSergei Lavrov after talks in Indonesia.
“I think it’s extremely significant that yesterday, Sunday, within a week of the (UN) resolutionbeing passed, some chemical weapons were being destroyed,” Kerry said.
“I think it’s also a credit to the Assad regime for complying, frankly, as they are supposed to.We hope that will continue. I am not going to vouch today for what happens months down theroad. But it’s a good beginning and we should welcome a good beginning.”
Kerry emphasized the dismantling process has occurred in record time, and hailed it as a model for international cooperation.