In a speech seen as a major rebuke to the West in general and the Obama Administration in particular, Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned the trend toward violent regime change in the Middle East, saying that they are only leading to further unrest.
“Violence only begets violence,” Putin added, urging the international community to unite in favor of calming tensions across the region and supporting negotiations instead of bloody civil wars like the one ongoing in Syria.
The comments come after President Obama’s speech calling for the world to stand with Syria‘s rebels and see to it that President Assad was eventually forced from office. Russia is allied with Assad and was also critical of last year’s NATO war against Libya.
Russia’s warnings have particular currency now after an attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi earlier this month, with several Russian officials pointing out that they had warned imposing regime change in the country would not lead to stabilization.