Syria agrees to surrender chemical weapons to prevent U.S. involvement
Published: Thursday, September 12, 2013
Updated: Thursday, September 12, 2013 16:09
BEIRUT (AP) — The U.S. and France pushed for a tough U.N. resolution on Tuesday, Sept. 10., to ensure Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime turns over its chemical weapons stockpile, but Assad’s ally Russia demanded the West take the threat of force off the table if Damascus fails to meet its promises.
Assad’s government on Tuesday promised to cooperate fully with the Russian plan, which calls for Syria to put its chemical weapons under international control, for eventual destruction.
On Monday, Sept 9. , Kerry said Assad could resolve the crisis by surrendering control of his chemical arsenal to the international community.
Wary that Damascus is only seeking to avoid U.S. military action, Washington and France said they seek strong U.N. language to enforce the Russian plan.
“We agreed to the Russian initiative as it should thwart the U.S. aggression against our country,” Syria’s al-Moallem said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said the plan can only work if “the American side and those who support the U.S.A, in this sense, reject the use of force.”
The U.S. has said more than 1,400 Syrians died.
Secretary of State John Kerry, in turn, said the U.S. has to have a full resolution, one that entails “consequences if games are played and somebody tries to undermine this,” Kerry said.