U.N. inspectors confirm chemical weapons in Syria
Published: Monday, September 16, 2013
Updated: Monday, September 16, 2013 22:09
The United Nations stated Monday there is “clear and convincing evidence” chemical weapons were used in a suburb of Damascus last month, but did not say who launched the attack.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the evidence gathered by U.N. inspectors is “indisputable,” but whether or not President Bashar al-Assad is responsible for the attack is unknown. Due to this report, Ban said the United Nations is planning on putting Syria under international control and is urging the Security Council to reach a decision regarding intervention.
In recent weeks, Secretary of State John Kerry has been an outspoken proponent of humanitarian intervention.
“The U.S. has been formulating its response to an alleged chemical attack carried out by Syrian forces that killed hundreds of civilians last month,” Kerry said on Sunday in Jerusalem. “These are crimes against humanity and they cannot be tolerated.”
Meanwhile, Russia has been more cautious of directly intervening. In an op-ed in the New York Times, Russian President Vladimir Putin said military force should be avoided until the U.N. can determine who is responsible.
The investigators reported 85 percent of blood samples tested positive for sarin gas.