White House condemns Syria chemical weapon attack

White House spokesperson Earnest stated Wednesday that US strongly condemned any and all use of chemical weapons and said those responsible for the use of chemical weapons must be held accountable

White House condemns Syria chemical weapon attack

World Bulletin/News Desk

White House spokesperson Josh Earnest stated Wednesday that the United States strongly condemned "any and all use of chemical weapons" and said those responsible for the use of chemical weapons must be held accountable.

Earnest, in a written statement, noted US was deeply concerned by reports that hundreds of Syrian civilians have been killed in an attack by Syrian government forces, including by the use of chemical weapons, near Damascus earlier Wednesday.

"If the Syrian government has nothing to hide and is truly committed to an impartial and credible investigation of chemical weapons use in Syria, it will facilitate the UN team’s immediate and unfettered access to this site," Earnest said.

"For the UN’s efforts to be credible, they must have immediate access to witnesses and affected individuals, and have the ability to examine and collect physical evidence without any interference or manipulation from the Syrian government."

He also urged all Syrian parties including the government and opposition, to provide immediate access to any and all sites of importance to the investigation and to ensure security for the UN investigative team.

In a daily briefing on Wednesday, Earnest separately stressed US strongly condemned the chemical weapon attack.

Earnest challenged the Assad regime to "live up to" their statements that they are interested in a credible investigation to get to the bottom of what exactly has happened."

"If they actually are interested in getting to the bottom of the use of chemical weapons and whether or not that's occurred in Syria, then they will allow the UN investigative team that's already in Syria to access the site where chemical weapons may have been used, it will allow them unfettered access to eyewitnesses or even those who were affected by the weapons, it will allow them to collect physical samples without manipulation and it will also insure the security of that team as they do their work," Earnest said.

On Wednesday, Syrian opposition coalition blamed the Syrian regime forces of carrying out a chemical weapon attack in suburbs of capital Damascus which it said killed at least 1,300 people.

A UN investigation team is currently in Syria to investigate earlier an allegation of use of chemical weapons reported by the Syrian government at Khan al-Assal as well as two other allegations reported by Security Council member states.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 22 Ağustos 2013, 09:30
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