The US Ambassador to Syria, Robert S. Ford, insisted he will continue to travel throughout the country and meet Syrians, and predicted that if the Syrian regime does not quickly address local protesters’ demands for reform “the street will wash them away,” adding that most of the regime’s current reform promises have been “irrelevant.”
“I have seen no evidence yet in terms of hard changes on ground that the Syrian government is willing to reform at anything like the speed demanded by the street protesters,” Ford said in an interview with Foreign Policy magazine.
“If it doesn’t start moving with far greater alacrity, the street will wash them away.”
“They need to begin a really serious transition and not just talk or make promises and to grant real political freedoms and to begin taking apart the oppressive and unaccountable security apparatus.” Ford added
He called for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to “take the hard decisions,” and move toward reform.
Ford has become an irritation for Syrian authorities since last Friday when he attended a large demonstration in the city of Hama, which has developed into an opposition stronghold.
The US embassy in Damascus was Monday attacked by a mob of pro-regime supporters, during demonstrations against the United States, triggering an angry response from Washington.