TOUGH

U.S.: No Assad in Syria Negotiations

The chief American envoy to the coalition fighting ISIS reassured Turkish officials that any negotiations to settle the four-year-old Syrian civil war should not include Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad. “The United States believes that [Assad] has lost all legitimacy to govern,” the U.S. embassy in Ankara said in a statement released after General John Allen’s talks, adding that “the United States’ position on Assad has not changed.” Allen’s meeting came as a bit of damage control: Just days ago, Secretary of State John Kerry set off alarm bells when he suggested Washington would “have to negotiate in the end” with the controversial leader.