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Obama discusses situation in Syria with European leaders

Last Updated: Saturday, June 15, 2013 - 21:06

Washington: Ahead of the G-8 summit in Northern Ireland next week, US President Barack Obama has spoken with the leaders of Britain, Italy, France and Germany and discussed the current situation in Syria.

"The five leaders discussed Syria, including the regime`s use of chemical weapons against its own people, and ways to support a political transition to end the conflict," the White House said in a statement today.

The call came yesterday, after Washington said it had proof that Syrian government forces had carried out deadly chemical weapons attacks against rebels and the United States would be providing military support to the opposition.

The European Union lifted an embargo on arming the Syrian opposition last month, paving the way for greater Western support for rebels battling to oust President Bashar al-Assad in a civil war that has claimed at least 93,000 lives.

Obama will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande, UK Prime Minister David Cameron and Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta in person at the Group of Eight summit, which will be held on Monday and Tuesday in Northern Ireland.
"The President noted how much he is looking forward to his first trip to Europe during his second term, which will include addressing youth in Belfast, Northern Ireland; attending the G-8; and making an official visit to Berlin at the invitation of Chancellor Merkel," the White House said.
"They also discussed Libya, our collective efforts to support Prime Minister Zeidan, and the Libyan government`s work to enhance security and advance the political transition," the statement added.


First Published: Saturday, June 15, 2013 - 21:06
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