Syria to respond to any aggression: Minister

Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad has said that his country would respond to any attack in case of foreign intervention.

Last Updated: Aug 27, 2013, 09:48 AM IST

Damascus: Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad has said that his country would respond to any attack in case of foreign intervention.

Mekdad made the remarks during an interview with Western media, whose excerpts were published in Arabic language by the state-run SANA news agency on Monday, Xinhua reported.

According to SANA, Mekdad said that once the Americans prepare their actions, they won`t kill but the innocent people. He noted that the US was capable of fighting, but Syria would also respond to any such action.

The military intervention was stirred up when the Syrian rebels accused the government troops last Wednesday of using chemical gas in an attack on the eastern al-Ghouta countryside of Damascus.

Damascus denied such claims, saying the incident only plays in the hands of the Western-backed rebels who are eager for a military intervention that could topple the administration of President Bashar al-Assad.

The incident also coincided with the advent of the UN chemical weapon investigation team that arrived in Syria to probe previous government claims of chemical weapon use in the northern town of Khan al-Assal and two other undisclosed locations.

Washington recently warned that any use of chemical weapons in Syria would be crossing a "red line", which could trigger actions that included the use of force.

US President Barak Obama ordered US intelligence agencies to "urgently probe" the claim and move warships near the Syrian waters.

US Secretary of Defence Chuck Hagel on Sunday said, "We are continuing to assess the facts so the President can make an informed decision about how to respond to this indiscriminate use of chemical weapons."

Washington reportedly urged the Syrian government to allow the UN investigation team to enter the eastern al-Ghouta to check the rebels` claims.

For its part, Syria responded positively on Sunday, saying it had concluded an agreement with the UN to allow the team to get into the restive suburb.

IANS