Lack of Russian aid plan for Syria 'frustrating': Clinton
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday said Russia's failure to produce an aid plan for Syria, despite its influence with President Bashar al-Assad, was "troubling" and "frustrating."
"We are doing everything we can think of to influence the Russians and the Chinese, particularly the Russians: they're the ones with the very deep, long-standing relationship with the Assad family, with Syria," Clinton said, AFP reported.
"They continue to sell arms to the Syrian regime," the chief US diplomat told the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
"We know that if we can persuade them to work with us, at least on the humanitarian issue, they will have access to Assad that hardly anybody else does have, at least nobody in the West," Clinton added.
"It is a very troubling and frustrating situation because the Russians continue to say, oh, they're for humanitarian aid, but then they don't produce any plan that Assad will sign off on," she said.
"Perhaps after their upcoming election, they will be able to focus on Syria's humanitarian situation that is causing so much loss of lives and sufferings," Clinton said.
Russia's presidential election is on March 4.
Refusing to wait until the Russians are ready to help, she said, the United States is looking for other ways to deliver aid to the Syrian people who have faced a deadly security crackdown for 11 months.
"This is a terrible crisis that demands the entire world's attention," Clinton said. "I hope Russia will come and work with us to try to resolve it."
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said last week that Russia opposes a French-backed idea of creating aid corridors in Syria to ease the worsening humanitarian situation in the country.
He said Moscow instead backed the idea of the International Committee of the Red Cross for a daily truce.
Clinton previously blasted Russia and China after they vetoed a UN Security Council resolution earlier this month that condemned Syria for its crackdown on dissent and outlined a post-Assad transition.