Obama calls for Syria 'sanctions' and end to Assad rule
UNITED NATIONS (AFP) - United States (US) President Barack Obama on Tuesday demanded "sanctions and consequences" for atrocities in Syria and said President Bashar al-Assad's rule must come to an end.
"The future must not belong to a dictator who massacres his people," Mr Obama told the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in a keynote address.
"If there is a cause that cries out for protest in the world today, it is a regime that tortures children and shoots rockets at apartment buildings." He told leaders at the UN headquarters: "As we meet here, we again declare that the regime of Bashar al-Assad must come to an end so that the suffering of the Syrian people can stop, and a new dawn can begin."
Mr Obama also warned that the international community must act to prevent the 18-month-old uprising against Assad from turning into "a cycle of sectarian violence."