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U.S. Rep. Bill Owens (D-Plattsburgh)
U.S. Rep. Bill Owens (D-Plattsburgh)

Owens welcomes "rational alternative" to military strikes in Syria

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Secretary of State John Kerry is in Geneva for talks with his Russian counterpart on a plan to secure and destroy Syrian chemical weapons.

The U.S.-Russia talks may offer a way to avoid U.S. strikes against the Syrian government for a chemical attack on civilians the U.S. blames on Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The talks ease the pressure on Congress to weigh in on possible military action against the Assad regime.

North Country Congressman Bill Owens welcomes the potential change in direction.

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Reported by

Martha Foley
News and Public Affairs Director

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Owens says many of his colleagues in Congress, Democrat and Republican, weren’t happy at having just two choices; no action, or military strikes. Speaking yesterday, he said, “The Russian proposal has given us, I believe, a rational alternative that needs to be explored. That’s what the administration is in the process of doing, and the president has asked to have the vote put on hold. I think that’s all very sensible.”

Owens hopes negotiations will lead to a U.N resolution setting out an orderly process for insuring that Syria’s chemical weapons are secured, and audited by an international group, without unilateral military action.“This would no longer be a U.S. action,” he said. “This would be a UN action that was agreed upon by Syria and the UN, which from my perspective is the best route to go.”

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