U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday the United States and France want to speed up political transition in Syria.
Speaking in a Paris stopover during a joint press conference with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, Kerry said the U.S. is "examining ways to accelerate" a change in the Syrian regime. Ways to do that, Kerry said, will be discussed in a "Friends of Syria" meeting in Rome on Thursday where nations support the opposition will gather.
Kerry said Washington is debating increased aid to the Syrian opposition which he said "needs more help."
His comments come as the United States is reported to be considering expanding its non-lethal assistance to the Syrian opposition.
U.S. and European officials say the White House is still weighing the new policy, as Kerry continues an overseas tour meeting with leaders in Europe and the Middle East.
The United States has so far provided only communications equipment to rebels opposed to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Officials have opposed sending military aid, fearing weapons could end up in the hands of radical fighters.
European Union foreign ministers agreed last week to extend an arms embargo against Syria, but did open the door to providing more non-lethal support to protect civilians.