Obama Waiting for 'Facts' About Syria's Use of Chemical Weapons
U.S. President Barack Obama is awaiting a “definitive judgment” on whether the Syrian regime used chemical weapons against rebel fighters before taking action, the White House said on Friday, according to AFP.
“We’re working to establish credible and corroborated facts,” White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters.
“The president wants the facts,” he added, saying there was no timeline for further action by the United States.
Carney also said that options for dealing with Syria’s use of chemical weapons “include” but are “not exclusive” to military force.
Washington on Thursday confirmed that Damascus may have used chemical weapons but on a “small scale.” It emphasized U.S. spy agencies were still not 100 percent sure, and it needs to collect more evidence.
British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Friday that growing evidence of the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime was "extremely serious".
Cameron agreed with President Barack Obama that such use would represent a "red line" for the international community, but said the response would likely be political rather than military.
Syria's opposition called on the international community on Thursday to act "urgently and decisively" on Obama's public warning that Syria's use of chemical weapons would cross a "red line."
A statement by the Syrian National Coalition called on the world community to prove to the Syrian regime that the statements about crossing a red line were not just "empty words."
U.S. senators said on Thursday it was time to intervene in Syria in the wake of the latest intelligence report.
Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in a statement that Assad had “crossed a red line” and that the international community should act to ensure his fall.
Senior U.S. Senator John McCain insisted that the U.S. military should have already intervened in Syria.
"We should have intervened long ago, whether (Bashar al-Assad) was using them (chemical weapons) or not. He slaughtered 80,000 people while we sat by and watched. It's been one of the most shameful chapters in American history," he said.
(Arutz Sheva’s North American Desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)