Washington: The Obama Administration has called for "methodical and vigorous" investigation into the assessment of its intelligence community that the Assad regime has used "chemical weapons" on a small scale in Syria.
Even as the top American lawmakers insisted the Assad regime has crossed the "red-line" and thus the US needs to move with the next course of action, the White House officials asserted that it needs further concrete evidence of the use of chemical weapons in Syria.
"We go on to reaffirm that the (US) President has set a clear red line as it relates to the United States that the use of chemical weapons or the transfer of chemical weapons to terrorist groups is a red line that is not acceptable to us, nor should it be to the international community," a senior White House official told reporters during a conference call yesterday.
"It`s precisely because we take this red line so seriously that we believe there is an obligation to fully investigate any and all evidence of chemical weapons use within Syria," the official said speaking to reporters on condition of anonymity.
"So the intelligence assessments inform our decision-making. We want to continue to investigate above and beyond those intelligence assessments to gather facts so that we can establish a credible and corroborated set of information that can then inform our decision-making," he said.
The State Department said the US continues to look at a potential range of scenarios. "We do so in close coordination with the countries that are primarily interested, including Syria`s neighbors and our key friends and allies," the State Department spokesman, Patrick Ventrell, told reporters at his daily news conference.