Intl. community urges immediate probe into alleged chemical attack in Syria
Details about what exactly happened remain murky, but Syrian activists claim these people, lying lifeless on the ground, were the victims of a gas attack carried out Wednesday by Syrian government forces near the capital, Damascus.
France's Foreign Minister says that, if the Bashar al-Assad's regime is proven to have used chemical weapons against its own people, the international community HAS to respond with force.
"There would have to be reaction with force in Syria from the international community but there is no question of sending troops on the ground.”
The deputy spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Thursday that the attacks needed to be probed without delay.
"The Secretary-General remains deeply troubled by the reports of the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria. The Secretary-General believes that the incidents reported yesterday need to be investigated without delay."
A top UN official has been dispatched to Syria to seek permission for UN investigators to visit the Damascus suburbs that were allegedly attacked.
It remains unclear whether the Syrian government will give the inspectors, who are already in Syria, access to the sites.
The U.S. is unable to say whether chemical weapons were used in the alleged attacks and it is trying to figure out through its own intelligence sources.
"At this time, right now, we are unable to conclusively determine chemical weapons use."
The Obama administration has said any U.S. response must await confirmation of the attacks.
Russia and China have called for a thorough investigation into the attack adding that the UN chemical weapons inspectors should fully consult with the Syrian government.
Syrian activists claim more than 1,300 people were killed in Wednesday's attack.
If proven, it would be the world's most deadly chemical weapons attack since the 1980s.
The Syrian government continues to deny the army used chemical weapons.
Ji Myung-kil, Arirang News.
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