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Clinton to China, Russia: Syria needs change

- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 5, 2012

BATUMI, Georgia (AP) — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Tuesday invited China and Russia to "be part of the solution in Syria" but said that must include a political transition from the Assad regime.

Mrs. Clinton said the transition "has to be the main focus of our diplomacy" and the violence over the past 10 days shows "peace and human dignity will not be possible in Syria without change."

Mrs. Clinton spoke to reporters Tuesday in the Georgian city of Batumi after Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin met Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said Tuesday the countries oppose "regime change by force." They've twice blocked the United Nations from imposing sanctions on Syria.

Mrs. Clinton will meet with former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the U.N.-Arab League special envoy to Syria, in Washington on Friday.

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