News / Middle East

Rights Group Blames Syria for Chemical Attack

Syria: Damascus Areas of Influence and Areas Reportedly Affected by 21 August Chemical Attack
Syria: Damascus Areas of Influence and Areas Reportedly Affected by 21 August Chemical Attack
VOA News
Human Rights Watch says Syrian forces were "almost certainly responsible" for the chemical weapons attack last month that sparked international debate on how to respond, including the prospect of a U.S. military strike.

The group said in a new report Tuesday that the type of rockets used, photos and videos from the attack sites, and interviews with victims and doctors all implicate government forces. It also says allegations of rebel responsibility lack credibility and do not match the evidence.

World mulls Russian plan

The report comes as world leaders express support for a proposal by Syrian ally Russia to place the country's chemical weapons under international control.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem endorsed the plan presented Monday, saying it would be a way to avoid what he called U.S. aggression. Iran, another Syrian ally, said Tuesday it welcomed the idea.

Khaled Saleh, a spokesman for the main opposition Syrian National Coalition criticized the proposal, saying President Bashar al-Assad would be unlikely to follow through and would use the step to "buy more time."

British Prime Minister David Cameron, whose parliament rejected the idea of military intervention, welcomed the plan, but also said the world needs to make sure it is not a "distraction tactic."

US, France still considering airstrikes

The United States and France are continuing to assess the option of conducting airstrikes against Syria to punish Assad for allegedly carrying out the deadly chemical attack and to deter any future use of the weapons.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said the Russian proposal merits examination, while U.S. Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken said the White House will "take a hard look" at the plan.

U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James Miller pressed the case for a military strike in talks with Chinese defense officials Monday, saying a strong response would also deter North Korea from using chemical weapons. Speaking Tuesday, Miller said he stressed the need to uphold the international threshold for chemical weapons as a matter of global security.

China and Russia have opposed outside military intervention in Syria, and have used their veto power on the United Nations Security Council to block three rounds of proposed sanctions against Assad's government.

You May Like

Video Obama Announces Plan to Send 3,000 Troops to Liberia in Ebola Fight

At US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Obama details troop deployment and other pieces of US plan More

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

Muslims in Kunming say that they condemn the violence, it is not a reflection of the true beliefs of their faith More

Humanitarian Aid, Equipment Blocked in Cameroon

Move is seen as a developing supply crisis in West Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: pilisugsug from: USA
September 10, 2013 2:01 PM
Everyone is concerned about chemical weapons in Syria. What about the weapons we use here in America that slice and dice and grind babies unborn babies as they try to escape from the prodding that the abortionist use.It sounds hypocritical to me.


by: Anonymous
September 10, 2013 8:04 AM
Assad was a criminal using conventional weapons, those weren't working then he turned to chemical and got his hand smacked. He tried to make the opposition out as "Bad Guys" if you ask me...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Communityi
X
September 16, 2014 2:06 PM
Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid