(WASHINGTON) — Three years into Syria’s violent civil war, the United States has suspended the operations of that country’s embassy in Washington, D.C., and its honorary consulates in Troy, Mich., and Houston.
Those who are not U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents must depart the United States, according to Special Envoy Daniel Rubinstein.
On Tuesday, Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States closed the Syrian Embassy in and is kicking out Syrian diplomats because the Assad regime has no legitimacy.
“We’ve all see in the pictures of the emaciated corpses. You can’t believe you’re in 2014,” he said. “And so we just felt the idea that this embassy is sitting here with representation that we could take seriously is an insult, and we closed it. It’s that simple.”
He also said that Assad would “never regain legitimacy in Syria,” and said it didn’t matter whether the leader ended up winning the conflict.
“Whether they win, don’t win, they can’t regain legitimacy,” Kerry said. “The people of that country who’ve been driven out, whose kids, parents, brothers, sisters, grandfathers have been killed are never going to look to him for leadership.”
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio
Ashley Strickland, CNN
Madeline Holcombe, CNN
Debra Goldschmidt, CNN
Ariane de Vogue, Mary Kay Mallonee and Emanuella Grinberg, CNN