State Dept Admits Nothing Productive Has Occurred in Geneva Discussions on Syria

• November 14, 2016 3:47 pm


State Department spokeswoman Elizabeth Trudeau admitted Monday that although the United States has been participating in multilateral discussions on the Syrian civil war in Geneva, Switzerland for some time now, virtually nothing productive has come from them.

Trudeau was pressed by Associated Press reporter Matt Lee on the worth of the talks that have been in their current setting for approximately a month and a half. The Geneva discussions have involved several countries but generally pitted the United States and other western nations against Russia and the Syrian regime.

Trudeau said she would not detail the discussions, although she confirmed that the talks were still ongoing. Lee then began questioning Trudeau on how worthwhile the diplomatic efforts have been.

"Can you point to any kind of success that these talks, that you continue to have, have made?" Lee asked.

"I can't point to success, but I can point to the fact that we continue to think that they're valuable enough that we remain at the table," Trudeau said.

"But they produce nothing then, right?" Lee asked.

"At this stage, we continue to engage," Trudeau said. "I don't have a result to point to."

Lee then pointed to this being part of the criticism of the Obama administration's approach to the crisis in Syria.

"Frankly, if they've been meeting for a month and a half and you can't point to a single thing that they've accomplished, I just wonder what is the point of continuing this," Lee said. "It seems like it's a charade, to make excuse for people to get a lot of expensive room service meals and luxury hotels in Switzerland."

Trudeau said the reason talks occur is because there are no other potential solutions, including a military one.