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US military strike on hold if Bashar al-Assad turns over chemical weapons: Barack Obama

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 11, 2013 - 08:49

Zee Media Bureau/ Neha Attre

Washington: US President Barack Obama on Monday said that a military strike against Syria can be put on hold if the war-torn country agrees to put chemical weapons under international control.

Obama said that US would hold off the strike if Syria and Russia prove that they are serious about placing the chemical weapons under the international control.

Ahead of a national address on the Syria crisis and facing a weak support by the Congress on US military strike, Obama accepted that he might not get enough votes in favour of military action. However, he declined to comment on the next course of action if it happens.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had earlier said that Russia will urge Syria to put its chemical weapons supply under international control if it averts US military action.

Russia`s proposal has been welcomed by Syria.

President Barack Obama had earlier said that any US strike in the strife-torn country would be “limited and proportional.”

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad also warned that any military intervention would worsen the chaos in the entire region.

Comparing the Middle East to a "powder keg", Assad said "the fire is approaching today" and the entire region would explode.

The United States has accused Assad regime for Aug 21 attack, which Washington says claimed 1429 lives. Assad has vehemently denied the claims.

Around two million Syrians have reportedly fled the country since the uprising in the country in 2011 and the figure is expected to touch 3.5 million by end of the year, a United Nations report has stated.

First Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 - 09:05
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