The US has said it does not want Syrian President Bashar al-Assad remaining in power, as he was the "cause of instability" in his country.
"As we have stated, President Assad is not indispensable and the US has nothing invested in Assad remaining in power. We do not want to see him remain in Syria for stability's sake and, rather, we view him as the cause of instability in Syria," Xinhua quoted White House spokesman Jay Carney as telling reporters at a news briefing.
Secretary of state Hillary Clinton has met US- based Syrian activists as the Obama administration is weighing new sanctions on Syria.
Carney said the US will continue to look at ways to take further steps to put pressure on the Assad regime to "end its violence".
"And we think, frankly, that it's safe to say that Syria would be a better place without President Assad," he added.