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Obama Warns Syria Over Use of Chemical Weapons

Obama Warns Syria Over Use of Chemical Weapons

Syria has the world’s fourth-largest supply of chemical weapons, says the New York Times. On Monday, President Barack Obama warned the country that the US would not hesitate to use military force “if there were signs that its arsenal of unconventional weapons was being moved or prepared for use.” Specifically citing “our close allies in the region, including Israel,” he stressed the regional risks should Syria deploy such weapons. Doing so would mean that the Syrian government had crossed a “red line.”

According to the BBC, Syria admitted to having chemical weapons in July. It has insisted that these would only be used in cases of “external aggression” and would “never be used in the Syrian crisis, no matter what the internal developments.” Syria is thought to possess mustard gas and sarin and the CIA believes that it has sought to develop “more toxic and more persistent nerve agents.”

Obama’s statement was his first direct mention of using force against Syria in the 18-month conflict.

On Tuesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who is holding talks with China’s top diplomat, State Councillor Dai Bingguo, and a delegation from the Syrian government in Moscow, said that “we need to strictly adhere to the norms of international law and the principles contained in the UN Charter, and not to allow their violation.” Lavrov also said that only the UN Security Council could authorize the use of force against Syria.

The U.S. and Russia, along with China, have been at odds over how to address the uprising in Syria for months. Russia and China have vetoed three UN Security Council resolutions demanding harsher measures against Syria and calling for President Bashar al-Assad to step down.

In Moscow, Syrian Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil said that foreign military intervention in Syria would be “impossible” because such would pull the conflict beyond the country’s borders. He also said that Obama was issuing “propaganda threats that are linked to the upcoming elections.”

A veteran Japanese war correspondent for Japan Press, Mika Yamamoto, was killed on Monday in Aleppo. Another Japan Press reporter, Kazutaka Sato, said that she was apparently shot by government forces.

Syrian soldiers reportedly led an assault on the western Damascus suburb of Muadhamiya today, in search of rebel fighters; the opposition reports that some 23 people were killed. According to a commander in the Free Syrian Army, Col Abdul Jabbar al-Ukaidi, the rebels now control 60 percent of the city of Aleppo, but government sources in Damascus dispute such a claim.

Related Care2 Coverage

Bombs and No Sweets: A Bleak Eid al-Fitr in Syria

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Assad Controls Only 30% of Syria, Former Prime Minister Claims

 

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36 comments

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9:31AM PDT on Aug 23, 2012

Mike C, Do you ever tire from speaking out on subjects to which you have NO understanding?

1st Obummer had he withdrawn from Iraq, as you propose, would have been crucified. Sure, I want America out of Iraq, No, I demand that we leave, but there is an old saying, "You break it, you own it."
Today, Iraq is broken, and w/o Saddam, there is no easy way to fix the country. We pump hundreds of $$$$ Billions into the country and near nothing gets accomplished, but more dead Americans and more hateful Sunni and Shia Muslins.

Obummer, to date, has not enter into any war with Iran, yet, those miserable jews, such as Netanscrewloose are using his Jew-American base to push America to war against Iran.

These jews in Occupied Palestine possess enough Nuclear Weapons to set the whole of the Middle East alight, and yet, we can only focus on Iran and the slight possibility they might one day possess the same weaponry.

Obummer may well have made an excellent peace time President, but this is beyond him, hell, he won't even listen to his Generals on the subject of Iran, Afghanistan or Iraq.

Of course, when is the last time that America was in a state of peace and not at war with some country? Not in your lifetime.

He does have one other failing...his love for his Killer Drone Program, it will prove to be his undoing. Let it be so.

6:59AM PDT on Aug 23, 2012

Leave them alone, let them sort it out. It always will come to JAW JAW not WAR WAR in the end.

5:28AM PDT on Aug 23, 2012

Wesley S - Some people only understand a big stick.

2:05AM PDT on Aug 23, 2012

What I don't understand is why is it OK for western powers to have all manner of weapons including chemical ?(the US has the largest stockpile in the world and refuses to sign international agreements over them. Strangely something called 'Calmatives' are high on the list). Also remember those WMD as a pretext to invade Iraq?
This Syrian charade is so spun by the western media, who knows whats going on. Only thing I can be sure of is Syria is an ally of Iran (international bogie man of the day) and with the regime out of the way, Iran is on its own.

10:22PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

Things just stay tense in one spot or another.

8:41PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

I cannot understand how Obama is suddenly willing to use force if Syria employs chemical weapons. Doesn't he realize that thousands upon thousands of people are being killed in the most atrocious ways ALREADY??? Why has he dilly-dallied all this time? What's he afraid of?

8:17PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

Dominic C, we will try to remember your words, when you country falls in to the hands of external powers, until then, enjoy, your probably next.

Now, let us forget about our troubles, everyone, sing along with, "Bring in the DRONES, there ought to be DRONES, the clowns, so love their DRONES. Think Judy Collins. Now sing.

This medley is dedicated to Dominic and to Obummer who so loves his DRONES, perhaps one day, someone will send one to him.

7:38PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

Time to take them out with the DRONES!

6:56PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

If Syria has weapons let them have weapons stay out their business.

5:50PM PDT on Aug 22, 2012

Sarah H, I call Bullsh*t on your post. You've been drinking bad kool-aid again. get your facts straight.

Attempting to work with other countries, instead of playing bully and shaking a "big stick" at therm is NOT apologizing, by any stretch.

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