News Column

Syria Red Line: Obama Wants to See the Evidence

April 26, 2013
President Obama (file photo)
President Obama (file photo)

US President Barack Obama Friday signalled his determination to get hard evidence of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, speaking for the first time on the newest revelations.

"Knowing that potentially chemical weapons have been used inside of Syria doesn't tell us when they were used or how they were used," Obama said before his meeting with Jordan's King Abdullah. His comment reflected the caution with which the US is moving on the very first indications that the US has "varying degrees" of confidence in new findings about the use of the nerve gas sarin in Syria.

Obama added that evidence of the use of such weapons "will change my calculus ... This is not an on and off switch, it's an on-going challenge." He said he was counting on Jordan and other neighbouring countries to help secure evidence about the chemical weapons use.

Obama also warned that solving the two-year-old Syrian crisis and Syria's possible use of chemical weapons will be "a long term proposition ... not something that is solved easily overnight."

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Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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