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Old 08-28-2013, 03:35 AM   #1
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Default Obama, Cameron 'in no doubt' Syria waged chemical attack

British Prime Minister David Cameron's office said Wednesday that he and US President Barack Obama had no doubt Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime had used chemical weapons against its own people.




Obama, Cameron 'in no doubt' Syria waged chemical attack
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Old 09-18-2013, 05:01 PM   #2
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Whose ‘Boots On the Ground’ Will Protect Weapons Inspectors in Syria?
September 16, 2013 -– When international scientific and technical personnel enter Syria to inspect, remove and destroy the regime’s chemical weapons stockpiles, they will need significant security support, raising questions about whether the Obama administration will keep its pledge to have no U.S. military deployed inside Syria.
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No one is publicly saying who will provide the protection needed by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) personnel entering a war zone, yet. But the wording of the agreement negotiated between the U.S. and Russia in recent days acknowledges the need for such security – and indicates that the two countries will share a responsibility in arranging it. “The Russian Federation and the United States will work together closely, including with the OPCW, the U.N. and Syrian parties to arrange for the security of the monitoring and destruction mission, noting the primary responsibility of the Syrian government in this regard,” it says.

Under the agreement’s tight schedule, the Assad regime has one week to declare all its chemical weapons, before personnel from the technical secretariat of the OPCW – which oversees the Chemical Weapons Convention – begin initial inspections. These are due to be completed by November, with mid-2004 the target date for the arsenal’s removal and elimination. When laying out and defending the now-suspended plan for a military response to the regime’s use of chemical weapons in an August 21 attack, administration officials from the president down repeatedly have insisted that there will be no U.S. military “boots on the ground.”

A senior State Department official disclosed during a background briefing Saturday that U.S. Central Command had prepared a “quick paper” before the team led by Secretary of State John Kerry went to Geneva to negotiate with the Russians, covering “options for security” for when OPCW personnel go into Syria to implement the agreement. The official described the Central Command proposals as “broad parameters, nothing very complex – just to give us some idea of the dimensions of the security challenge to secure a site.”

The U.S. believes there are at least 45 locations in the country associated with the chemical weapons programs, all in areas controlled by the regime rather than the rebels fighting to overthrow it. “Even in a regime-controlled area, we would need considerable security,” the State Department official said. “OPCW would need considerable security for protection of the site, if nothing else. Security is still a daunting challenge, even given regime control.”

- See more at: Whose ?Boots On the Ground? Will Protect Weapons Inspectors in Syria? | CNS News
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