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EU to toughen sanctions on Syria after China, Russia UN veto: France

(Xinhua)

08:51, February 06, 2012

PARIS, Feb. 5 (Xinhua) -- French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe on Sunday said the European Union (EU) will impose tougher sanctions against Syria after Russia and China vetoed a UN Security Council resolution to force the Syrian president Bashar al-Assad to quite power.

"Europe will further tighten sanctions which are imposed on the Syrian regime and then we will try to mount the international pressure (on Bashar al-Assad regime)," Juppe told local channel BFMTV.

"It will be a moment when the regime will be forced to recognize that it is completely isolated and can not continue," he added.

The French top diplomat noted that Paris and its European partners are working to help Syrian opposition to be more structured and organized but ruled out a military intervention in Syria.

"We will not use military force if we will not have a mandate of the Security Council," the minister said.

On Saturday, French President Nicolas Sarkozy announced the creation of "Friends of the Syrian People Group" to find enough international support to implement the Arab League plan urging al-Assad to give up power.

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